The extract below is from an email kindly sent from Amanda Carson APHA Small Ruminant Veterinary Lead:
“On 21st December 2016 Schmallenberg virus was confirmed by PCR as the cause of abortion on four different holdings in the South West of England in aborted foetuses presenting with deformities.
In all cases the practitioner had performed post mortem examination and submitted samples to APHA for testing from holdings in Devon, Dorset and Somerset. The test costs for SBV PCR in these cases was not charged to the practitioner as it formed part of our surveillance for SBV which we carry out on all on foetal submissions presenting with deformities consistent with suspicion of SBV.
APHA is the only laboratory performing the PCR test. Since January 2016 there have been 24 investigations in sheep with these four being the first positive cases in sheep following on from the first positive case reported in a calf in Devon last month”