Europe struggles to control ASF in wild boar

After an absence of about eight months, African swine fever (ASF) has been detected again in the Ternopil region of Ukraine.

Wild Boar Or Sus Scrofa, Also Known As The Wild Swine, Eurasian
l i g h t p o e t | Bigstock.com

As the number of wild boar infected with African swine fever (ASF) in the region climbs ever higher, just 2 European states have reported new outbreaks among domestic pigs.

After an absence of about eight months, African swine fever (ASF) has been detected again in the Ternopil region of Ukraine.

Affected was a backyard herd of 63 pigs, seven of which died, according to the official report to the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE).

Ukraine’s veterinary authority reports that the previous outbreak in this western oblast was in September 2019.

In recent weeks, the authority also reported the return of ASF to the regions of Zaporizhia and Sumy.

In the northern oblast, Chernigov, the ASF situation has been “resolved.” This declaration from the Ukrainian ministry to the OIE comes after several months without new outbreaks. The only cases in this outbreak series were two wild boar in the region that tested positive for the virus during January.

More ASF cases confirmed among Romanian backyard herds

During the past week, Romania’s animal health agency has confirmed to the OIE a further six ASF outbreaks in domestic pigs.

Presence of the virus was detected in herds ranging from three to 26 pigs across four regions of the country. A total of 53 animals died or were culled as a result of these outbreaks.

Overview of ASF situation in domestic pigs in Europe

Up to the end of May, the European Commission (EC) had recorded a total of 291 ASF outbreaks in domestic pigs in Europe so far this year through its Animal Disease Notification System (ADNS).

This represents an increase of five from the previous week’s report. Romania accounted for four of these latest outbreaks, and there was one new outbreak in Ukraine.

From this source, by far the worst-affected country in Europe so far this year has been Romania (262 outbreaks), followed by Bulgaria with 17. Also reporting cases in 2020 are Ukraine (7 outbreaks), Poland (2), and Greece, Lithuania and Moldova, each with one outbreak.

Four European states report new ASF outbreaks among wild boar

With its total of 558, Poland has reported the most new cases of ASF in wild boar to the OIE over the past week. All of the animals were found dead or culled between early January and mid-February. Of the Polish total, a majority were found in the eastern provinces. The remaining 248 virus-positive cases were in Lubusz and Wielkopolskie (Greater Poland), which are in the west of the country.

Over the past week, OIE has received confirmation of further outbreaks in wild animals from Hungary (119 animals), Romania (56) and Russia’s Samara oblast (1).

At 6,424, Europe’s ASF cases for the year so far have now exceeded the total of 6,407 reached in the whole of 2019, according to the EC ADNS system.

This is 177 more wild boar than the previous week’s total, and includes 99 in Hungary, and 50 in Poland.

At 2,643 and 2,537, respectively, Hungary and Poland have reported the highest number of infected animals since the start of 2020.

Other countries that have reported significant numbers of ASF-infected wild boar to the EC this year are Romania (497 cases), Bulgaria (324), Latvia and Slovakia (each with 115), and Lithuania (99). Also with new cases over the past month are Estonia and Moldova.

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

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