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Establishment of a maedi-visna-free flock after the purchase of infected sheep
  1. A. Otter, MA, VetMB, PhD, MRCVS1 and
  2. T. Boundy, BVSc, FRAGS, MRCVS, MBE2
  1. 1Veterinary Laboratories Agency – Shrewsbury, Kendal Road, Harlescott, Shrewsbury SY1 4HD
  2. 2Tegfan, Montgomery, Powys SY15 6HW


Maedi-visna (MV) infection was detected in a cohort of 68 purchased ewes, one of several groups of sheep introduced to a farm after the previous stock had been culled with suspected foot-and-mouth disease in 2001. Except for short periods totalling six to seven weeks when the sheep co-grazed with 13 ewe lambs and ram lambs, the infected cohort was kept separate from other sheep on the farm over a total of 21 months. During this period two crops of lambs were reared from the infected ewes. All the lambs were fattened and killed, and all ewes were culled after the second crop of lambs had been weaned. Subsequent serological testing of the remaining sheep on the farm confirmed the elimination of MV infection from the flock, leading to its acceptance in the Maedi Visna Accreditation Scheme of the Scottish Agricultural College’s Sheep and Goat Health Schemes.

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