The effect of Mycoplasma bovis on cattle is well documented, but what about the farmers dealing with the fallout from the disease?

A new study from Otago University will focus on the emotional, social and psychological impacts of Mycoplasma bovis on Southern farmers and farming communities.

Otago University's Senior Research Fellow, Rural Health, Dr Fiona Doolan-Noble is leading the study.

She told The Country's Jamie Mackay that this type of research is important, yet "rare."


Read more: Study on M. bovis' impact on farmers welcomed

"There were studies following the Foot and Mouth outbreak in the UK in 2001 and they have kind of given us a hint of what we might possibly find."

Doolan-Noble says that Mycoplasma bovis is a "different beast," to Foot and Mouth (FMD) which was "acute" and "dealt with quite quickly."

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She hopes the new study will give an understanding of the different effects the two diseases have had on rural communities.

The study is currently in the planning stage and Doolan-Noble says the team is looking for participants.

"We're really keen if any farmers or farmer's partners are out there and would like to talk to us in the near future."

The study begins in April. If you are interested in taking part you can email Dr Doolan-Noble , or phone her on 021 372 328.