Across Africa the disease trypanosomosis kills millions of livestock annually. Over the last 60 years many strategies have been tried for dealing with the disease, with limited success. The most common method is to use drugs called trypanocides to treat and prevent disease. Now resistance to these drugs is developing, making it increasingly difficult to control trypanosomosis over ever growing areas. Rational Drug Use is a new approach that aims to minimize the emergence and spread of resistance to trypanocides. By promoting good practices tested in human health, it aims to improve treatments and animal health. But with over 50 million doses of trypanocides being given to cattle annually, is this too little, too late? This is one of three films telling the story of the current state of the war against a disease that is so deadly and widespread that farmers call it "the malaria of cattle'.
Today's science and development issues are complex, often involving multiple international players, yet demanding local solutions. Increasingly, many acknowledge that such local solutions can best be summed up and communicated by showing local people talking in their own surroundings, especially in a world where few outside the research communities have the time or expertise to assess raw data. In this setting, science and development documentaries fill a vital role.The film department at ILRI (the International Livestock Research Institute) therefore aims to widen understanding of important topics that face pro-poor agricultural research in livestock issues, so removing one stumbling-block to the quick up-take of new technologies among those who could benefit most.