Thursday, October 18, 2007

Bluetongue hits local farms...

Bad news for local farmers as a case of bluetongue disease has been confirmed in a ram at Fitwilliam Farm, Milton Estates in Bretton, Peterborough.

A 20km control zone has been declared around the affected farm (that's 12 and a half miles in real money). The zone includes all The Deepings and stretches west beyond Stamford, east past Thorney and as far north as Bourne.

No movement of ruminating animals is allowed out of a the zone unless for slaughter, for which a licence is required. Licences are also required for movements within the Control Zone.

The remainder of Lincolnshire is in the Blue Tongue Protection Zone, as is much of England. Ruminants can be moved within the Protection Zone, but cannot be moved out of it except to slaughter under licence.

Spread by midges, bluetongue is damaging to the farming industry though nowhere near as deadly as foot-and-mouth. It's a disease traditionally associated with Africa, with the first ever UK case detected only a couple of months ago.

More evidence of global warming...?

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