Animal movements allowed in FMD “low risk zone”

  • Farmers are now allowed to move animals off farm if they are within the new foot-and-mouth (FMD) low risk zone, but two new bluetongue zones have been set up after four confirmed cases in Suffolk.

    Defra says there are currently seven FMD infected premises, all within the Egham area, and a temporary control zone at Maidenhead.

    Two new foot and mouth risk areas came into effect on Tuesday 25 September.

    They are a risk area consisting of Essex, Kent, East and West Sussex, Hampshire, Surrey, Berkshire, Hertfordshire, Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Greater London.

    And a low risk area covering the rest of England, Wales and Scotland.

    In England, farm to farm movements were allowed from 3.30pm Tuesday 25 September under stringent conditions and subject to high levels of biosecurity with enforcement by Local Authorities.

    But there are still restrictions for horse riders.

    Hunting and point-to-point meetings are banned across the country, as are gatherings of animals (even horses).

    Horses may not be ridden into a protection zone, even by road and you must not transport your horse into a protection zone, even to see a vet.

    You may transport your horse through a protection zone, but you must do so only without breaking your journey.

    There are now two bluetongue zones, one covers Norfolk and Suffolk and the other is temporary surveillance zone covering adjoining counties.

    But Defra does not yet class it as an outbreak.

    Bluetongue is a viral disease that affects sheep, cattle, goats and deer and camelids like llama and alpaca.

    It is transmitted by midges and direct transmission between animals is not possible.

    Bluetongue does not affect horses, ponies or donkeys or humans.

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