Text only version:

We are pleased to confirm that in response to increased demand, we are extending our drug delivery service to include a weekly collecti on point at

Holsworthy Livestock Market. From Wednesday 29 May, it will be possible to collect preordered drugs from our newly opened kiosk at the market.

Drugs can be ordered up to 2pm on the Tuesday prior and will be available for collection between 09:30 and 13:30 at the market subject to available stock.

Torch Farm Vets Director Mike Blake comments “We are always looking at ways we can improve our service and reach to our valued clients. When the opportunity arose to take on a kiosk at the market, we didn’t have to think twice. It’s a great opportunity not only to provide a regular, convenient pick-up spot for our clients in the Holsworthy region, but to catch up with faces old and new, too. We are one of the region’s only remaining independent veterinary practices, and as vet-owners who live and work in the local area, feel it so important to ensure we are doing the best we can to service the local farming community in a convenient way that best suits them.”

More information coming soon – watch this space!


We are beginning to see the first few cases of fly strike in sheep.

Sheep should be observed closely twice a day for evidence of fly strike. Apply topical treatments if you have not done so already.

Signs of disease:

Early: separation from group, itchy; observe nibbling, stamping, tail switching, distressed sheep.

Mid-stage: discolouration of the fleece, depression.

Late stage: severe depression, off legs, death.

Risk factors:

Sheep: moist dung on back side, long fleece, wounds, footrot, lumpy wool, long tails, wormy sheep.

Environment: river valleys, hot, humid weather, carcases left in field, fields bordering woodland.



• dock/crutching

• control gut worms to reduce scouring

• shearing ewes, but will increase the fly pressure on lambs

• treat lameness promptly

• dispose of all fallen stock promptly

• ensure lambs’ tails are correct length when applying rings.


• Mobile plunge dip operators are becoming popular – dips also treat scab and lice

• Synthetic pyrethroid such as Ectoflyor Spot On – both treat and prevent, generally short acting: 6-8 weeks

• Insect Growth Regulators such as Clik or Vetrazin – last longer but have no repellant activity, they are for prevention only.

Find out more at www.scops.org.uk or speak to one of the Torch Farm Vets team for advice and information


This month it’s time to shine the spotlight on one of our brilliant Vet Techs, Kate.

Q:Where are you based and how long have you worked for Torch?

A: I am based in South Molton and I have worked as a technician for Torch since 2015.

Q: What made you decided to go into a vet tech career?

A: Having grown up on the family farm, I knew I wanted to work with animals. We’ve been clients with Torch for several years, and my Gran saw the position

advertised in the newsletter- prompting for me to apply. Our vet Mike Glover encouraged me as well, I think he must have put in a good word!

Q: Did you undertake any formal training before starting the role?

A: Nope- I joined Torch having done my A Levels in Biology, Chemistry and Physics. I have been trained several things since I’ve worked here including cattle foot trimming, blood sampling, calf monitoring and even sheep embryology!

Q: What’s the best thing about your job?

And the worst?

A: The best thing about working is going out to all the different farms, being part of the South West Sheep Breeding team we cover from Cornwall to Dorset- and even ventured to Hampshire once to A.I. sheep!

Torch is a fantastic team to work for and It’s always a laugh here, it’s pretty good when the vet students bake cake too.

The worst thing about my job is cleaning up after the vets when the come in with all the kit plastered in goodness knows what!

Q: Do you have animals yourself?

A: Aside from the family farm, I have a horse called Kevin, a collie called Mango and I’ve just started my own little flock of Suffolk sheep.

Q: What do you like to do in your spare time?

My Favourite thing to do is ride my horse across the moors, although there hasn’t been much time for that at the minute because of lambing!


Our BVD campaign is continuing at a pace. We have now enrolled our full initial allocati on of 120 farms with breeding cattle.

If you are interested in assessing or reviewing your herds status, please speak with us and we can either add you to the list should additional funding becomeavailable or undertake the work as soon as possible.

BVD Farm Check Tests – Results to date:

We have check tested 74/120 enrolled farms to date

The chart below reveals that of those 74 farms, evidence of active infection has been confirmed and funding for PI hunts approved in 11 (15%).

PI Hunts

Of the 11 farms that have had PI hunt funding approved, we have completed sampling on 2.

Completed PI Hunts                   Number Tested                     Pi Animals found

Farm 1                                                  8                                                     2

Farm 2                                                  120                                                 3


Thank you to all who joined us for our annual rugby hospitality day at Barnstaple RFC.

A cold and blustery day did not deter the hearty crew of Torch Farm clients, who joined us to watch the Chiefs take on Weston-Super-Mare on Saturday

13th April.

An entertaining match ensued, culminating in a 22-22 draw for their last match of the season.

PS… Our website has had a bit of a facelift .

Take a look at torchfarmvets.com for our latest news, information on all of the services we offer and details for all of our upcoming meetings and events.

Plus the odd new picture or two…