Royal Welsh 09: Bluetongue warning over livestock imports

Livestock farmers have been urged to think twice about importing animals from bluetongue hotspots.

Speaking at the Royal Welsh Show, Welsh chief vet Christianne Glossop (pictured) said the government could not ban imports, so it was up to farmers to balance the benefits and risks of bringing in animals.

She said she remained very disappointed that over half of Welsh farmers had not taken up the opportunity to vaccinate.

Their stock was still vulnerable and they were luck that serotype 8 infection had not “woken up with a vengeance” in France this year.

On bovine TB, Dr Glossop reported that the Health Check testing of all cattle herds in Wales was running ahead of schedule.

Legislation was being prepared to allow intensive action, including a limited badger cull, in north Pembrokeshire, she added.

“This should be in place by the autumn,” Dr Glossop said.