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Mare Reproductive Loss Syndrome

Open Meeting For All Horse Owners and Breeders

Understanding MRLS in 2002 and Management Strategies for 2003

Tuesday, November 5, Embassy Suites, Newtown Pike
Pre-registration is necessary

As the fall breeding stock sale moves closer, we realize that a New Year and a new breeding season are just around the corner. Unlike last year at this time, we can enter this year’s sales and upcoming breeding season with more confidence. The 2001 and 2002 breeding seasons brought us Mare Reproductive Loss Syndrome (MRLS) which devastated many horsemen and put fear into all of us. In 2003, however, we now have “a compass heading” to point for with control measures. The Eastern Tent Caterpillar (ETC) has been established to have a relationship with the incidence of MRLS. Research still has no exact mechanism that defines “why” the ETC effects pregnant mares but we do have proof that MRLS was dramatically reduced or not present on farms that used control measures to rid farms of the ETC.

The Kentucky Thoroughbred Farm Managers’ Club will hold its November 5th meeting to discuss caterpillar control and the research to back up the importance of reducing your caterpillar population. The night’s event will be moderated by Dr. Jimmy Henning with the Department of Agronomy at the University of Kentucky. Dr. Henning will also give a summary of his monitoring programs for the 2002 MRLS season. The evening’s panel will consist of Dr. Lee Townsend, Department of Entomology at the University of Kentucky, to discuss control strategies for 2003. Also Dr. Stuart Brown will touch on his field results seen by farms following the contingency plans and the studies that followed fetal growth and development in MRLS exposed mares. Dr. Bill Bernard, President of the Kentucky Association of Equine Practitioners, will be present to update our group on the past study results from research projects dealing with ETC exposure. Our last panelist is Steve Johnson, President of Margaux Farm in Midway. He will discuss his field experience with caterpillar control and some management practices that were implemented in 2002 to reduce losses to MRLS.

I am pleased to put together this panel that will present the first MRLS meeting with a positive, helpful, and informative agenda.

As we all know, MRLS was not breed specific. Thoroughbreds were not the only breed affected by this problem. For this reason the KTFMC is going to make our November 5th meeting at the Embassy Suites on Newtown Pike open to non-members who can attend by making a reservation. The open registration will begin at 6:30 p.m. and the meeting will begin at 7:30 p.m.

Whether you are a member of the KTFMC or not, please call and make your reservations at 296-4279 with Linda Javid. The reservation fee for all non-members is $20 and must be pre-paid (credit card okay).

Please join us in November so that we can develop a working management plan for the 2003 breeding season.

Eric Hamelback, President
Thoroughbred Farm Managers Club




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