Latvia reports first ASF cases in pigs this year

Latvia reports first ASF cases in pigs this year

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In addition to new outbreaks in backyard herds in Romania and Russia, there have been further cases among wild boar in 3 European countries.

Latvia’s veterinary authority has confirmed the first cases of African swine fever (ASF) in domestic pigs so far this year. Affected this month was a backyard herd of 31 animals. According to the official report to the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), three of the pigs died, and the rest have been destroyed.

As well as the culling of the herd, quarantine measures have been put in place, reports Baltic News Network. A protection zone has been set up in an area within 3 kilometers of the farm, and a monitoring zone for those within a 10-kilometer radius. While warning farmers to be on alert for signs of illness in their pigs, the national veterinary service has begun an epidemiological investigation into the outbreak.

The affected farm is in the municipality of Kuldiga, which is in western Latvia.

While there have been many cases of ASF among the Latvian wild boar population — including more than 130 this year — the country’s most recent outbreak in domestic pigs was 12 months ago. It was the only such outbreak in Latvia in 2019, after 10 outbreaks the previous year, according to the European Commission Animal Disease Notification Service (ADNS).

Further outbreaks in Romania and Russia

In the past week, Romania’s animal health agency has confirmed 14 new outbreaks of ASF in backyard herds. Belonging to groups of between two and 81 animals, a total of 308 pigs were affected, according to the official report to the OIE. Starting in the period June 20-30, the outbreaks occurred across several regions of the country.

This total includes two discarded pig carcasses, and a cluster of outbreaks in the county of Timis, which is the west of the country, and borders Hungary and Serbia.

According to the Russian agriculture ministry, ASF was confirmed in village pig herd in Samara oblast at the end of June. Almost all of the 20 animals showed signs of the disease, and 17 of them died.

Located in the Volga federal district, Samara oblast has been the location of previous ASF cases. Most recent was a wild boar in early June.

More ASF cases among European wild boar

Over the past week, four states in Europe have confirmed to the OIE further cases of ASF among their respective wild boar populations.

Reporting the highest number of infected boar — 118 — was Poland. After multiple previous outbreaks, these animals were found dead or killed in five eastern provinces during the period February 7 to March 15.

A further 81 ASF-positive cases were detected among wild boar in Hungary. New cases were also reported to the OIE by Latvia (13 animals) and Romania (11).

View our continuing coverage of the global African swine fever situation.