Cattle Lice. Lice. Lice populations build up on cattle in the winter months , and are mainly a problem from November through March .
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Lice should be suspected when cattle show signs of rubbing.
Rubbing causes hair loss on the neck, shoulders and rump and needs to be differentiated from the normal appearance of the seasonal shedding of the winter coat.
To detect lice, run cattle through a chute and examine the skin by parting the hair. Good lighting and a magnifying glass will help you see the lice as they attempt to move away from direct sunlight.
Biting lice of cattle are recognized by a rounded head, light brown color and high mobility as they move when the hair is parted. Sucking lice are grey or blue grey and have a pointed head that tends to remain fixed to the skin. You may also see eggs, which are white and cemented to the shafts of coat hairs in clumps.
A second treatment for lice control must be made 2 to 3 weeks after the initial treatment because the developing eggs present at the time of initial treatment will hatch and the residual pesticide will likely not be of a concentration high enough to kill the newly emerging nymphs.