Threats of TB Spreading In Indiana

US - TB testing across Franlin County continues as agencies try to determine if disease has spread further.
calendar icon 28 September 2009
clock icon 2 minute read

Indiana continues to make progress in the eradication of bovine tuberculosis (TB) that was first identified in May on a farmed cervid (deer, elk) operation in Franklin County. Since May, the staff of the Indiana State Board of Animal Health (BOAH) has been working to trace the movement of all animals off of the index site, as well as identify the source of infection.

Over 40 herds in 16 Indaian counties have been tested, to-date, TB positives have been found on only three sites. BOAH has been working closely with the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to do surveillance for the disease in the wild white-tailed deer population on and around the index herd in Franklin County. DNR harvested 30 deer from the area, which BOAH veterinarians examined and submitted for laboratory testing. Due to the slow-growing nature of tuberculosis, test results will not be available for several weeks.

BOAH will soon be sending letters to cattle producers with herds housed within (roughly) 3 miles of the Franklin County index site. The packets will explain the process for having each herd tested for TB. Testing will be done by approved local private veterinary practitioners, at no charge to the producer. Only cattle around the Franklin site will be tested, because laboratory testing confirmed that a TB sample linked to a Franklin County beef herd back in December 2008 is genetically identical to the organism found on the cervid farm in May. BOAH needs to determine if further disease spread has occurred within the community.

BOAH and DNR will also be doing extensive surveillance and testing of the wild white-tailed deer in all three counties during firearms season (beginning 14 November). The two agencies will be providing more information to the hunters and others during three upcoming public meetings.

Further Reading

- Find out more information on TB by clicking here.

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