October 30: Defra has published the first epidemiology report into the Bluetongue outbreak, based on the situation up to 19 October.
The report concludes that the infection was likely to have been initially introduced into Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex on the night of 4/5 August by windborne transmission of infected midges from continental Europe.
The report also describes the generally low morbidity, mortality and prevalence rates in infected animals. The majority of infected premises have only one infected animal and the prevalence is generally low.
Surveillance and testing are ongoing to gain an understanding of the geographical extent of the Bluetongue infection and to determine disease prevalence within herds and flocks. Read the epidemiological report at http://www.defra.gov.uk