University of Missouri Director of Veterinary Extension, Craig Payne urges cattle producers to watch for signs of disease associated with Theileria orientalis (ikeda), a protozoal organism recently detected in Missouri. The main route of transmission is through the Asian long-horned tick, an invasive species found in 19 states.

First discovered in 2017 in the United States, it has been found in nine states, including Missouri. Payne says that as of March 1, there were six counties in Missouri where cattle have tested positive: Bates, Howell, Oregon, Platte, Shelby and Webster.

With mild infections, cattle may show elevated temperature, depression and pale mucous membranes. With severe infections, they can show severe depression and the mucous membranes around eyes and the vulva appear jaundiced with a yellow tinge. Pregnant animals may abort and animals will lose body condition. Payne notes that most infected cattle never show symptoms, and death loss rates are typically less than 5%.

Read more about the emerging cattle disease in Missouri here.