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CatchmentCare & Teagasc Sheep Dipping Demonstration

Teagasc Donegal is part of a very important educational tool for sheep farmers and Agricultural Advisers in every county in Ireland. It's the first video where a best practice approach to plunge sheep dipping, and the correct disposal for the spent dip afterwards, has been demonstrated and explained

This video is the result of close collaboration between Teagasc in Donegal and those bodies involved in the CatchmentCare Programme.



CatchmentCARE is an EU-funded project that aims to improve freshwater quality within the North Western and Neagh Bann international river basins. The project is focused across three cross-border catchments, the Arney, Blackwater and Finn. https://www.catchmentcare.eu/ The project partners include the following organisations: Donegal County Council (Lead Partner) and Armagh City, Banbridge & Craigavon Borough Council, Ulster University, The Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute (AFBI), British Geological Survey, Loughs Agency, Geological Survey Ireland and Inland Fisheries Ireland. These bodies work collectively and their co-operation results in a strong team with a rich and diverse skill-set. The synergy of this collaboration is already apparent when one looks at the range of initiatives undertaken to date.

Cypermethrin traces initiated video

Traces of Cypermethrin, a chemical that is used as an insecticide in both agricultural and domestic products, has been detected in a number of rivers or streams in Donegal and in other parts of Ireland. Examples of where insecticides are used in agriculture include cereals, forestry and sheep dips.

In the Autumn of 2019 Seamus Campbell, Teagasc Business and Technology Adviser based in Carndonagh, was contacted by Con McLaughlin from Donegal County Council regarding liaising with and educating sheep farmers about the safe disposal of spent sheep and this project kicked off from there

Initially it was planned to have a series of on-farm ‘Best Practice Events’ or demonstrations. The first of these was planned for July 2020 but due to COVID 19 restrictions this had to be postponed and the idea of a ‘best practice video’ was discussed and agreed. It was decided to involve BIMEDA (a sheep dip manufacturer) and at a later stage the Irish Natura and Hill Farmers Association became involved.  The wide range of organisations and industry partners finally involved should ensure that all aspects were addressed and that the video will get good buy in and acceptance.

Issues addressed

It was agreed that this video would address a number of issues including;

  • Water quality and how insecticides can cause harm and result in reduced water quality.
  • A best practice approach for the plunge dipping of sheep.
  • The importance of plunge dipping and as a management tool for sheep farmers in the control of all external parasites of sheep.
  • Comment on its role in preventing anthelmintic resistance.
  • Proper facilities for handling and plunge dipping.
  • The correct plunge dipping technique and the importance of time in the bath to ensure complete saturation of the fleece.
  • Correct mixing and ‘topping up’ practice when dipping.
  • Proper disposal of the spent dip.

This video is a very important educational tool for sheep farmers and Agricultural Advisers in every county in Ireland. It is the first video where a best practice approach to plunge sheep dipping and the correct disposal for the spent dip afterwards has been demonstrated and explained. Thanks is due to those concerned but a special thank you is due to Patrick Harkin in Cloghan who was the host farmer for this event and Fidelma Maher Donegal County Council who co-ordinated the project.

Ag deireadh an fiseán seo tá agallamh as gaeilge idir Paddy Browne, Comhairleoir Teagasc agus feirmeoir, Michael Campbell. Labhraíonn siad faoi na buntáistí a bhaineann le caoirigh a thumadh, na cúiseanna le tumadh caorach agus snámh caorach a dhiúscairt go sábháilte. Tá  físeáin gan an agallamh as gaeilge freisin agus tá an físeáin sin anseo. There is a video version without the Irish interview at the end, here 


Fidelma Maher (Donegal County Council) , Sean Gallanagh (Loughs Agency), Morgan Lane and Shane Jennings (BIMEDA), James Keane, John J. Cannon, Seamus Campbell, Patrick Browne, Sean Roarty (Teagasc), Patrick Harkin (Host Farmer), Phelim Molloy (INHFA), Ciaran McDermott  (Dipping Contractor), Michael Campbell (Local Farmer), CatchmentCare, Teagasc, Donegal County Council, Loughs Agency, Bimeda, The Irish Natura and Hill Farmers Association

More information on the CatchmentCARE project can be found at this link https://www.catchmentcare.eu/

More information from Teagasc on Flock Health can be found here