New African Horse Sickness outbreaks in Western Cape

Two more horses have died from African horse sickness (AHS) in the Western Cape since a young stallion had died of the dreaded sickness last month.

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Western Cape economic opportunities MEC Alan Winde said three more horses on Schoongezicht, the Paarl farm where the first case was detected, had tested positive for the disease.

Four horses on four other properties in the Drakenstein Local Municipality have also tested positive for the disease since the outbreak. Of these four horses‚ two have died.

Winde said the current containment zone would remain in place until further notice.

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"All the cases took place within the containment zone. At the start of the outbreak our vets predicted that if the illness should spread it would do so in the direction of the wind, which carries the midges. That is exactly what we have seen happen here. Vets will continue with their surveillance program, which includes ongoing testing," said Winde.

Currently no vaccination against AHS is permitted within the containment area. Horse owners are encouraged to stable their horses from two hours before sunset to two hours after dawn to decrease the risk of the vector of the disease having contact with their horses.

• Click on the Map below to view the African Horse Sickness containment area.