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A practicable method of collecting swabs from the trachea of live anaesthesized pigs was developed and tested with 92 pneumonic animals from different farms.The bacteriological results from tracheal swabs were compared with those from nasal and tonsil swabs of identical animals and in 20 cases an additional comparison was made with the bacteriological findings from necropsy samples. The best agreement was found between tracheal swabs and necropsy samples. Results differed strongly between tracheal and tonsil swabs. The primary species isolated were pasteurella multocida subsp. multocida (tracheal swabs: 44 %, tonsil swabs: 19%, nasal swabs: 35%), bordetella bronchiseptica (tracheal swabs: 35%, tonsil swabs: 14%, nasal swabs: 27%) and haemophilus parasuis (tracheal swabs: 20%, tonsil swabs: 4%, nasal swabs: 9%). Clearly less accompanying flora was found in the racheal swabs compared with nasal or tonsil swabs.In a follow-up study, the results of clinical and microbiological investigations of 22 pigs were compared. Eleven animals were treated three days with bromhexin and the others with a combination of bromhexin and oxytetracycline. Samples were taken four times per animal at intervals of four days. The first investigations after treatment showed a clear decrease in bacteria as well as in clinical symptoms in the group treated with oxytetracycline. Later, the isolation rate of bacteria increased again.The detectability of some pathogen bacteria was examined after storing the samples at a temperature of 7 degrees or 20 degrees for 1, 24, 48 and 72 hours.Good evaluability was maintained under cool conditions (7°C) until 24 hours of storage. At a temperature of 20 degrees the samples were soon covered with accompanying flora.