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Wyoming reports second case of brucellosis in two months

Progressive Cattleman Associate Editor Carrie Veselka Published on 16 November 2018

A new case of brucellosis has been found in a northwestern Wyoming beef cattle herd. Serology test results from the Wyoming State Veterinary Laboratory and the National Veterinary Services Laboratory showed reactor levels in five cattle from one herd. Further testing from both labs, including bacterial culture, will be conducted to confirm serology results.

The herd was located in Teton County, which is part of the Wyoming Brucellosis Designated Surveillance Area (DSA).

Jim Logan, Wyoming state veterinarian, and Thach Winslow, assistant state field veterinarian, are working with the owner of the infected cattle and are conducting an epidemiologic investigation. The herd with known brucella-positive animals is currently under quarantine. Under orders from Logan and Winslow, no sexually intact cattle can be moved from the quarantined premises until conditions of the quarantine release are met.

In a Wyoming Livestock Board news release, Logan said he does not believe there are any additional herds epidemiologically linked to this case, including the case reported in October of this year from a herd in Park County, also in the Wyoming Brucellosis DSA, where three cattle from the same herd showed reactor levels from serology testing. These two cases are being treated as completely separate and unrelated events.

Brucellosis is a bacterial disease that can cause cattle, elk and bison to abort their pregnancies, typically late-term. All of Wyoming’s brucellosis cases since 1988 have been determined to have been caused by transmission from infected wildlife to cattle or domestic bison. Wyoming’s last cases were found in late 2015, and the last affected herd was released in June of 2017.

Brucellosis is a higher risk in northwestern Wyoming due to the close proximity to Yellowstone National Park, part of which is in Park County, and the high populations of elk and bison in the area, so producers and state agencies are vigilant about screening for the disease.

For more information on the current cases, contact the Wyoming Livestock Board field office at (307) 857-4140.  end mark

Carrie Veselka
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