Journal article

An outbreak of severe iodine-deficiency goitre in a sheep flock in north-east Victoria

AJD Campbell, EL Croser, ME Milne, PJ Hodge, JK Webb Ware



BACKGROUND: Several outbreaks of goitre, considered to be related to iodine deficiency, occurred in sheep flocks throughout Victoria in 2010. OBJECTIVE: We describe one outbreak in Merino-Border Leicester-cross ewes and their lambs in north-east Victoria that appeared to be associated with increased rainfall and pasture growth, particularly during the preceding summer and autumn. RESULTS: The outbreak was characterised by a four-fold increase in neonatal lamb deaths and goitre, alopecia and poor skeletal development in the lambs. Most cases occurred in lambs born to 2-year-old crossbred ewes that had grazed long, lush perennial pastures throughout their entire pregnancy, whereas few cases oc..

View full abstract


Funding Acknowledgements

We are grateful to Professor Emeritus Ivan Caple for his helpful comments on this case. The investigation was subsidised under the Victorian Department of Primary Industries' Significant Disease Investigation scheme.