THE VIDEO evidence showing dead sheep at Bobby Waugh‘s, Burnside Farm, Heddon-on-the-Wall, has also prompted calls for an investigation into the origins of the outbreak. 

“The presence of the sheep and the claim that they came from land near Prestwick Hall Farm means we must ask again whether the disease was already present in sheep and cattle before it ever got to Burnside Farm,” said Professor Sheila Crispin.

Prof Crispin suggested that it would be valuable to investigate whether Prestwick Hall Farm could have been infected by the dead sheep as they were moved.

And she referred to evidence that showed details of veterinary visits to examine foot lesions in sheep at that farm during Feb 2001.

“We know that vets were called out to treat foot lesions at Prestwick Hall Farm as early as Feb 10.

“The vets were called out again on Feb 20 to examine the lesions and again on Feb 25 when F&M was identified and found to be well established in the sheep flock and the cattle herd,” she added.

The documented evidence – a paper published by the Veterinary Record in April 2003 – also supposed that the foot lesions seen at Prestwick Hall Farm could have been F&M lesions.

It added that the earliest date for the clinical disease to have become established in the pig herd at Burnside Farm was on or about Jan 26, 2001 – two days after the sheep were left in Bobby Waugh‘s shed.