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Bluetongue Death Toll Rises, Turkey Croatia Infected

03 November 2014

GLOBAL – Bluetongue virus has moved some 400 kilometres into Turkey killing three sheep on three farms after the initial summer outbreak on the country’s western periphery.

Major vaccination programmes are in force in the Balikesir and Canakkale districts in response to eight cases confirmed by the Etlik Veterinary Control Central Research Institute.

The notification, including news from Croatia, takes the total number of infected countries to twelve. 

Over 100,000 additional sheep have been vaccinated in the two districts, adding to the 340,000 head vaccinated for serotype four of the virus in Kirklarelli following the early August cases.

The newly infected areas lie south of Kirklarelli, across the Sea Marmara and west of Bursa city.

The source of the outbreak was vectors and “contact with infected animals at grazing or watering”, said the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) in a report.

In southern Croatia, 27 cases have been reported, although no sheep have yet died from the disease which is affecting ‘small scale’ extensive farms.

Describing the identification process for the as yet “not typed” virus, an OIE spokesperson said: “Suspicion is notified based on bluetongue clinical signs in sheep.”

“Serological testing revealed a positive result. Further laboratory testing and epidemiological investigation are ongoing.”

The six infected holdings lie within the Dubrovnik-Neretva region, close to neighbouring Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro, both Bluetongue positive.

Michael Priestley

Michael Priestley
News Team - Editor

Mainly production and market stories on ruminants sector. Works closely with sustainability consultants at FAI Farms.

Top image via Shutterstock

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