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Posted: 03/21/2023

Rotation Matters! Discover the Y-Tex Insecticide Rotation Chart

Are you looking to improve your herd’s fly control program? Now is a good time to get your plan of action in place so you can protect your cattle from diseases and ultimately improve your operation’s bottom line.

Y-Tex’s insecticide ear tags offer consistent fly control with just one pinch, and they’ve planned your rotation for the next 4 years. Read on to learn how the Y-Tex Insecticide Rotation Chart can be a game-changer for your operation.

Dairy cow with flies on face

How Do Insecticide Ear Tags Work?

An insecticidal ear tag is made from molded PVC and contains a slow-release insecticide to kill flies with direct contact. Tags get attached to the animal’s ear the same as identification tags do. After attachment, the insecticide begins releasing small volumes every day for the next 3-4 months. The active ingredient in each tag gets transferred to the animal through hair follicles during natural grooming efforts. Chemicals do not get absorbed into meat or milk products because of the slow-release process.

If you’re curious how quickly the insecticidal cattle ear tags work, Y-Tex says studies have found a lethal dose of insecticide on hind leg hair clippings 3 days after tagging. This means the chemical traveled from the back of the ear to the back leg in just three days, and it was a strong enough dose to be effective against pests.

Ear Tag Placement

Review safety instructions from each individual tag package before you apply any cattle tag. Also restrain the animal to make the process easier on both the animal and the handler. Apply antiseptic solution on the button to avoid post-tagging infections, too.

Pin the tag between the pieces of cartilage – directly below the main piece that runs across the middle of the ear, and above the smaller cartilage below it. If the animal already has a tag below the main cartilage, pin above the main cartilage just below the smaller cartilage at the top of the ear. Some instructions may recommend two tags per animal, so be sure to double check before you finalize your order.

Preventing Insecticide Resistance

If your target pests have been exposed to a sub-lethal dose of insecticide, they can develop a resistance to a particular chemical group. They can also develop a resistance if they get the same chemical repeatedly. Resistance can develop rapidly – depending on the kind of fly and how quickly they reproduce – and continues through the generations as more pests are exposed to the chemical.

A chemical rotation strategy is key to helping prevent insecticide resistance because when fly populations are not exposed to certain chemicals for 2-3 years, they’re not as likely to build a resistance. This is why a 4-year insecticidal ear tag rotation is definitely worth implementing into any fly control program.

Y-Tex Insecticidal Ear Tag Rotation Strategy

The Y-Tex Insecticidal Ear Tag Chart provides an easy-to follow 4-year rotation strategy using 3 different insecticides. Learn more about each of the tags below.

  • Year 1: Tri-Zap Ear Tags with a unique combination of Zetacypermethrin, Abamectin and Piperonyl butoxide. These three active ingredients control horn and face flies, lice and spinose ear ticks.
  • Year 2: Choose either MAX40 Ear Tags or OPtimizer Ear Tags as both have a different active ingredient than the previous year. This time Organophosphate helps control targeted pests for up to 5 months, and the patented Snap-Lok™ collar prevents tag or button failure for up to 5 months.
  • Year 3: Control horn and face flies, lice and ticks with either the PYthon II Ear Tags or the best-selling PYthon II MagnuM Ear Tags. These are approved for lactating dairy cows and there’s no withdrawal time required.
  • Year 4: For the last step in the rotation, XP 820 Ear Tags contain the active ingredient Macrocyclic Lactone. Several independent studies have shown this tag improves the average calf’s weight gain by 52.4 lbs compared to untreated animals.
All Y-TEX insecticide ear tags are designed to be applied with Y-TEX taggers. The ergonomically designed UltraTagger Applicator is rugged and durable, with a quick-release pin that helps prevent torn ears. The compact orange tagger fits in a pocket or saddle bag. The plus models (gray and blue taggers) are designed for 2-piece tags and RFID or tamper-proof tags.

Get Rotation Right with Y-Tex from PBS Animal Health

We’ve got everything you need to master the insecticide rotation strategy for your fly control program. Shop all Y-Tex products now and keep those tags on to keep the flies off your herd. Be sure to check out our Insecticidal Ear Tag Comparison Chart for quick reference on which tags are safe for different kinds of cattle, the length of control offered, color and pest coverage.

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