Lithgow Pony Club PO Box 553 LITHGOW NSW 2790 Newsletter: E-mail: lpcnews@gmail.

com Phone: 6355 2023

Hello everyone, Well, this is going to be a very brief Newsletter, as we have no results or photos of recent events, and no future events to let you know about. As most of you will know, the Pony Club Association of NSW has cancelled all Pony Club events until 31st December. Frank has been keeping us all informed about the situation with Equine Influenza through his regular emails, and I’ve attached the most recent update from the Horse Industry Council, and the map showing the new Zones for Restricted, Control and Protected areas. Lithgow is in the Control (Amber) area, which means it’s not infected but being monitored closely, with horse movements still banned without a permit. We must not become complacent, and exercise all care, especially when visiting areas such as the Hawkesbury, that we don’t inadvertently bring the virus back here, on our clothing or car wheels. CROSS COUNTRY COURSE The Cross Country Course was one topic of discussion at the Committee meeting, and it has been decided that work should begin as soon as possible. So, to that end, we are asking all members to have a look in your sheds and see if you have any items that may be of use in building jumps, such as 44gal drums, bricks, logs (100-150mm), bathtubs, pipes, polypipe, wire, 20ltr drums, paint, paintbrushes, or anything else that you think might be handy. We will be arranging a drop-off day when everyone will be able to bring all these items to the Pony Club grounds, ready for our first Working Bee on the November Rally Day (which will be horse-free, of course). So, if you have anything you would like to donate, please ring Donny or e-mail the Newsletter, and we will co-ordinate the drop-off day. Also, please keep 3rd November free to come and help at the Working Bee. We’ll also be having a sausage sizzle.

COMMITTEE MEMBERS FOR 2007 SENIOR INSTRUCTOR/ CLUB CAPTAIN Sharon McLaughlin 6355 2060 PRESIDENT Frank Thorvaldsson 6337 5507 VICE PRESIDENTS Carol Gabriel 6352 5312 & Carolyn Thorburn 9498 4306 SECRETARY Beth Cook 6351 2365 MINUTES SECRETARY Leanne Durkic 6355 2202 ASSISTANT SECRETARY/ NEWSLETTER Lynn Denver-Stevenson 6355 2023 TREASURER Donny Campbell 6355 2213 PUBLICITY OFFICER Linda Hume 6355 0249

Pony Club of the Month
Frank is putting together our entry to become NSW Pony Club of the Month, and he would like the children to help him, by writing a brief sentence or two saying what they like best about Pony Club. Please e-mail Frank at or post your suggestions to the PO Box.

Chocolate Fund-Raiser
There are still one or two amounts outstanding for the Chocolate FundRaiser we did late last year. If you still haven’t forwarded the money to Leanne Ferguson, could you please post it to the PO Box as soon as possible, as we need to finalise the bookkeeping before the annual Audit.


How rude!



Horse flu zones now in place in NSW
21 Sep 2007 Primary Industries Minister Ian Macdonald has reminded horse owners across the State to make sure they are aware of the equine influenza colour zones, which come into effect today. “Today is a new era in the management of equine influenza (EI) in NSW with the softening of movement regulations in some parts of the State,” Mr Macdonald said. “Owners are required to take on a new level of responsibility, how this is handled will be crucial to the success of the current campaign to stamp out EI and prevent new infections. “A major public information delivery campaign is underway by the NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) to ensure horse owners get the right information. “This is a combination of press advertising, direct mail to thousands of affected horse owners, and an extensive email newsletter distribution to thousands people from service clubs, industry groups, veterinarians and horse owners. “The Department’s website is receiving about 20,000 hits per day and our 1800 number can provide answers to the public’s queries very quickly.” Mr Macdonald said each of the NSW DPI’s offices across the State had information fact sheets available to the public. “If people have a question they should contact 1800 675 888 to speak with a NSW DPI staff member,” he said. “This is a massive effort to get information out to the public. We need the public to play their role and seek out the information they need to make informed decisions.” Mr Macdonald said intelligence gathered by epidemiologists, surveillance teams and field veterinarians allows the State to be broken into four colour zones representing the known level of disease infection and risk of spread. The zones are: Green – Protected Area - no disease, aim to keep free. Currently includes the Far West, Riverina and Eden-Monaro areas. Travelling Horse Statement required and a permit for events. Amber – Control Area – no confirmed disease, suspect horses to be investigated as quickly as possible. Based around large parts of the Central West and North Coast areas. Movements may be authorised for racing and breeding. Movements to other events prohibited. Red – Restricted Area – area of at least 10 km around infected premises, high containment and biosecurity to be applied to individual premises and area. Currently includes a band stretching from Sydney, Newcastle and Central Coast areas roughly following the New England Highway up to the Queensland border. Limited permits within the red zone, current movement restrictions stand. Purple – Special Restricted Area – largely infected, high containment and biosecurity applied to movements out of area. Includes two purple zones in the Upper Hunter and North West Sydney. Can move in with a permit but cannot leave until authorised. Downloadable maps of the four colour EI zones are available on the DPI’s website: NSW Equine Influenza Hotline 1800 675 888 Media contact: 6391 3311

21 Sep 2007 To help stop the spread of Equine Influenza (EI), NSW DPI is reminding people that simply patting an infected horse could spread of the virus. DPI deputy chief veterinary officer Steve Dunn said EI will only be controlled if people exercise common sense and good hygiene practises when they are in the vicinity of horses in infected areas. “We have received a number of reports from concerned people who have witnessed children and adults patting horses in high risk zones,” he said. “Their concerns are justified because everyday human-to-horse contact such as patting horses over a roadside fence could lead to the transmission of the virus to the next horse they pat. “Horse flu is a respiratory disease. The virus spreads when an infected horse snorts or sneezes. “While horses are often friendly animals, in order to contain and stamp out EI we all need to be very, very careful that horse contact with humans, equipment and other horses in high risk areas does not spread the virus.” “The safest option at the moment is to avoid any contact with horses.”

Hygiene Tips for people in contact with horses in high risk areas:
Infected horses excrete huge quantities of Equine Influenza virus when they cough or sneeze. The virus can survive on hard, non-porous surfaces such as plastic and stainless steel for up to 48 hours. It can survive on fabrics and skin for up to 12 hours or longer. It can be killed easily by cleaning and disinfection - you just need to be thorough. When disinfecting yourself or equipment, make sure you pay extra attention to areas in the firing line of coughing, sneezing or snorting. Follow a rigorous scrub-in and scrub-out procedure when visiting horse properties, whether the horses are known to be infected or not.

Four weeks of Equine Influenza
It is now four weeks since we knew we had Equine Influenza. I would like to offer some personal comments on our efforts to contain and eradicate horse flu. Four weeks ago, by the weekend of 25 and 26 August, the disease had been spread widely. Efforts by NSW and Qld DPI’s have restricted the spread to around those original infected properties. We had little idea how the disease would behave under Australian conditions. There were theories that the virus, being sensitive to heat and light, would not survive well in Australia and that property to property spread would not be great. We know now that aerosol spread in winter / spring conditions has been the major cause of spread from property to property. Our expectation is that this spread will be reduced as the weather warms up. There has been disagreement about whether the disease has been contained. The confusion is about definition. Horse owners whose horses have become infected feel that the control strategy is not working. However, disease control authorities argue that containment is effective because the disease has not spread beyond containment lines. Let us not argue about definitions. There has been property to property spread within Restricted Areas but very little spread out of Restricted Areas. If contained, EI will burn itself out. We need buffer zones, augmented by vaccination, to prevent any creep of infection. NSW and Qld are now trying to ease some of the restrictions to allow some things to return to normal without risk of further spread. This is not without some risk but there is also a risk in continuing oppressive restrictions. Cooperation from all sectors of the horse industry towards the control of the disease has been vigorous and sustained. The disease would have spread far and wide without this cooperation. Please continue to comply with the advice of the relevant authorities regarding restrictions on the movement of horses, vehicles, equipment and people. Many horse owners have been locked down with their horses far from home. They have done it tough for four weeks. The first properties infected are now being proven free of infection as was predicted a month ago. Quarantine will only be removed from properties or areas if there is no risk of horses spreading infection when they are free to move. This is a much easier condition to meet on an individual property than a group of properties. It will be difficult to prove that Tamworth and Parkes no longer have infected horses. To prove that the whole of the Sydney basin is free of infection will be a daunting task. It would be better in many ways if all horses in Sydney become infected as soon as possible. I can envisage Sydney running special "purple zone only" events in the near future as the horses recover. It has been increasingly hard to get informative and factual stories in the media. There is always room for some sensational story, particularly from some personality who does not agree with the control strategy. Lately the press has also featured evidence of disagreements between states or between state and Federal ministers. This type of publicity is very counter productive – we need to retain our unity.

On the Australian Horse Industry Council home page we say that: “We will do what we can to help all horse owners in Australia, irrespective of where you live, what type of horse you ride or what you do with your horses.”
Although it seems that the media is always emphasising thoroughbred racing and breeding, we must remember that all horses are equally susceptible and that the owners of a $500 pony are just as concerned about their horse as the owner of a $500,000 racehorse. Sometimes it seems that factional disputes (which horses have the highest priority or which state has first call on vaccine) are diverting attention from the main task, which is to control and eliminate Equine Influenza. Victorian racing interests are worried that the Spring Carnival is at risk following the infection getting into Warwick Farm. It was certainly disappointing that infection reached Warwick Farm because a lot of effort by NSW Racing, stewards and trainers had been put into keeping them clean. As we found from the escape from Eastern Creek, it only takes a simple breakdown in biosecurity for this virus to be transferred. There is little chance that the virus was transmitted through the air because the nearest infected property was 7 km away. However, from the disease control point of view the infection occurred within the proposed buffer zones and it did not represent a break through containment lines. The work being done in NSW is primarily to stop the infection spreading any further, especially into Victoria. It is hard to understand why the Federal Minister was reported as saying there is only a slim chance that the infection can be controlled. This may be the greatest animal disease emergency faced by Australia but we don’t need the Federal Minister throwing in the towel. We need some Churchillian inspiration that we can and will eliminate this virus. Once we get rid of Equine Influenza we would be grateful if AQIS did a better job of keeping it out in future. Thanks for your kind words of support for the AHIC's efforts.

Rod Hoare for the Australian Horse Industry Council

Wow, really, guys, no need to flood me with all your pretty pictures and poems and things. –Sarcasm much? - Now really, with this horrid horse flu I KNOW it can’t be because you’re too busy on the weekend. Thankyou Kelly and Adele, who sent me plenty of things to keep me occupied for a while, but they will run out! C’mon, you’re a creative bunch! Show it all off! Please, don’t make me beg…. It’s not a pretty sight. Heh.

What animal has more hands than feet? A Horse What breed of horse can jump higher than a house? All breeds, houses can’t jump. A man rode into town on June 3rd and stayed a week and rode out on June 3rd. How is this possible? His horse was named June 3rd. -Kelly and Adele

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Horse: “I bet I can scream louder than you, kid!”

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If you do a thorough check of your trailer before hauling, your truck will break down. There is no such thing as a sterile barn cat. No one ever notices how you ride until you fall off. The least useful horse in your barn will eat the most, require shoes every four weeks and need the vet at least once a month. A horse's misbehaviour will be in direct proportion to the number of people who are watching. Tack you hate never wears out; blankets you hate cannot be destroyed; horses you hate cannot be sold and will outlive you. Clipper blades will become dull only when the horse is half finished. Clipper motors will quit only when you have the horse's head left to trim. If you're wondering if you left the water on in the barn, you did. If you're wondering if you latched the pasture gate, you didn't. One horse isn't enough; two is too many. If you approach within 50 feet of the barn in your "street clothes," you will get dirty. You can't push a horse on a lunge line. If a horse is advertised "under $5,000," you can bet he isn't $2,500. The number of horses you own increases according to the number of stalls in your barn. An uncomplicated horse can be ruined with enough schooling. You can't run a barn without baling twine. Hoof picks migrate. Wind velocity increases in direct proportion to how well your hat fits. There is no such thing as the "right feed." If you fall off, you will land on the site of your most recent injury. If you're winning, quit.

Don’t forget to send me any photos you have taken of you and your horse during the movement ban. Or maybe some drawings or stories.

Quote of the Month: A Horse’s Logic: If at first you don't succeed, shy, shy and shy again.