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Passive surveillance (1987 to 2004) of United Kingdom bats for European bat lyssaviruses
  1. S. L. Harris, BSc, PhD1,
  2. S. M. Brookes, BSc, PhD2,
  3. G. Jones, BSc, PhD1,
  4. A. M. Hutson3 and
  5. A. R. Fooks, BSc, PhD, FIBiol2
  1. 1 School of Biological Sciences, University of Bristol, Woodland Road, Bristol BS8 1UG
  2. 2 Rabies and Wildlife Zoonoses Group, Veterinary Laboratories Agency (VLA) — Weybridge, World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for the Characterisation of Rabies and Rabies-Related Viruses, New Haw, Addlestone, Surrey KT15 3NB
  3. 3 Winkfield, Station Road, Plumpton Green, East Sussex BN7 3BU
  1. Correspondence to Dr Fooks


Passive surveillance for European bat lyssaviruses (eblvs) in the uk began in 1987, and between 1987 and 2004, 4883 bats of European origin (4871 belonging to 17 uk resident species and 12 belonging to seven non-uk resident species) were tested. The proportions and numbers of each species submitted from different regions varied considerably, partly owing to inherent biases in the passive surveillance, and there were seasonal variations in the numbers, sex and age of the bats. Contact with cats was reported in approximately 30 per cent of the bats submitted. Daubenton's bat (Myotis daubentonii) was the only species found to be positive for lyssavirus infection, with four cases of eblv type 2 identified, in 1996, 2002, 2003 and 2004. No active infection with eblv type 1 was recorded.

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