Understanding Bluetongue vaccination
Two key livestock scientists – Dr Chris Oura (Institute for Animal Health) and Dr James Wood (University of Cambridge) have embarked on a new study to investigate the effectiveness and application of Bluetongue vaccination in Britain.
Following the arrival of Bluetongue (BTV-8) in the East of England last September, farmers began vaccinating their livestock with newly developed, protective vaccine in May. The aim of the vaccination programme is to block the spread of disease this year both in the areas affected in 2007 (predominantly in East Anglia) and in other regions of the UK.
“We are most keen to get the involvement of farmers in Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and Suffolk in this study, they being at the epicentre of last year’s historic outbreak.” says Chris Oura. “To help farmers this year and next year, we need to assess how well vaccination is working and what reasons underlie decisions to vaccinate”.
The ORC urges all organic livestock farmers in the region to take part, as vaccination as part of organic livestock systems is often little understood and to some remains controversial.