SBV is a livestock disease that was first discovered in 2011 and that has been detected in a number of European countries; It is spread by insect vectors, probably Culicoides midges. It is not possible to be specific about the clinical signs of the disease, but they may include a drop in milk production, fever and diarrhoea in adult cattle and late abortion or abnormalities in newborn cattle, sheep and goats. Animals exposed to the disease seem to develop immunity, making it likely that disease will die out in areas where the disease has been present. This is a relatively low impact disease. However, in a small number of flocks and herds it can have a significant impact. The impact on each flock depends on the number of ewes/cows without immunity that are at the vulnerable stage of pregnancy when infection begins, so it is possible that in a small number of cases the consequences could be much more severe. SBV is not notifiable in the UK and no restrictions are placed on infected premises.
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