PLEASE NOTE THE DATE OF THIS ARTICLE! ALL DURING 2006 WE WERE WARNING GOAT AND SHEEP OWNERS THAT THEIR SCRAPIE REGISTRATION WAS TO BE USED TO PULL THEM INTO THE NAIS. WE WERE ACCUSED OF "SPREADING MISINFORMATION". JUDGE FOR YOURSELF. MORE INFORMATION WILL BE COMING ON THIS SUBJECT...
December 2005 - Vol. 4 Issue 6
National Animal ID System and the National Scrapie Program: Words of Clarification
By Marilyn Bassford, MDA
and Dr. Diane Sutton, USDA/APHIS/VS
Recently, a mailing of 8,200 letters was sent from the Maryland Department of Agriculture (MDA) that went to all known equine and livestock producers across the State of Maryland to invite them to register their livestock
premises in the National Animal Identification System (NAIS). A livestock premises can be anything from a family residence with just a few poultry, goats, sheep, or horses, to an integrated livestock production unit. Anywhere horses, poultry, or other livestock are housed will need a premises identification number.
The NAIS program will give us the capability to traceback an animal who had direct contact with a foreign animal disease or a domestic disease of concern to their birth herd and other facilities where they have resided within
48 hours after discovery.
All are welcome to register their premises. Size does not matter. The program will register producers with one or more farm-type animals on their property. At this time, the NAIS program is voluntary, but will most likely
become mandatory in 2007.
In 2001, sheep and goat producers were required to officially identify their sheep and goats when they moved in interstate commerce. Maryland is in the process of requiring official identification of sheep and goats when they change ownership. Putting this rule into place will allow Maryland to meet federal consistent state requirements, thus allowing Maryland sheep and goats to continue to move interstate with minimal requirements. To acquire
official ID, sheep and goat producers must register with USDA and get the flock identification number that appears on most official sheep and goat tags. The flock ID number is also known as the scrapie premises identification number. Producers may register and request free official sheep and goat tags from USDA by calling
It is unfortunate that both NAIS and the scrapie program used the same term "premises identification number (PIN)" in their registration processes. However, there is good news. The Scrapie Program is integrating with NAIS and will use the NAIS PIN to describe the physical location of animals and the scrapie flock ID to describe a group of animals that is managed as a unit. All new participants (to the Scrapie program) will be asked to register with the NAIS program when they call to register for the scrapie program so that the NAIS PIN can be used as the premises number to describe the flock's location in the scrapie program database. (Our emphasis)
If you have a scrapie flock number we ask that you register with the NAIS program and provide your scrapie flock ID so that USDA can update your scrapie program registration to include the NAIS number. You will need to do
this if you wish to purchase the new RFID3 tags and to receive any official tags once NAIS becomes mandatory. The scrapie flock ID will continue to appear on tags.
There is another option for Maryland sheep and goat owners who have registered with the scrapie program to be automatically registered with NAIS. To do this we will need to hear from producer associations letting us know
that this is what is desired. If we do this and you have other species besides sheep and goats, you will need to update the NAIS registration to include them.
You can obtain a NAIS registration form from the Maryland Department of Agriculture Animal Health/NAIS web page www.mda.state .md.us/animal_health/nais. Please remember to indicate your scrapie flock ID on the form so that we can have your scrapie registration updated. For questions, please contact Marilyn Bassford at (410) 742-6023 or nais@mda. state.md.us. 3Radio Frequency IDentification