Dr Mandy Nevel, AHDB Head of Animal Health and Welfare, said: “The announcement of a case of BTV-3 in the UK is obviously concerning for UK sheep and cattle producers.
As BVT-3 is a viral disease transmitted by biting midges, the hope is that the disease can be contained this winter as temperatures drop.
However, concerns remain that further cases will emerge next year once the midge season starts. UK farmers still need to be vigilant and monitor their livestock closely, particularly in the absence of a vaccine for this particular strain.
“While Bluetongue does not represent a risk to human health, it is a notifiable animal disease and farmers must, as a legal requirement, report any suspicious signs of the disease in their livestock to Defra. This can be done by calling the Defra Rural Services Helpline on 03000 200 301. In Wales, contact 0300 303 8268. In Scotland, contact your local Field Service Office.
“Imports of animals from countries with BTV-3 is restricted and farmers wishing to import from other countries are advised to consult with their vets to determine the risks.
“AHDB will continue to liaise closely with the Government and industry to monitor the current situation,” said Dr Nevel.
Further information on clinical signs and resources can be found here: https://ruminanthw.org.uk/bluetongue-virus/