INDEPENDENT NEWS

Pigs Not the TB Culprit Either

Published: Wed 28 Oct 2015 01:28 PM
Pigs Not the TB Culprit Either
Wild pigs are no more responsible for spreading bovine tuberculosis than possums, says New Zealand First Primary Industries and Outdoor Recreation Spokesperson Richard Prosser.
“The OSPRI numbers, supplied to New Zealand First in response to questions to the Minister of Primary Industries, are unequivocal, and are turning long-held popular perceptions about TB – and 1080 – on their heads.
“Earlier this year, New Zealand First released official figures showing that of more than 124,000 possums autopsied over the last ten years, only 54 had bovine TB, a rate of just 0.04 per cent.
“Now we have figures showing that over the past eight years, only 18 pigs tested positive for TB out of a total of more than 7,700 examined. That’s less than one quarter of one per cent.
“On top of that, there has been a 40 per cent reduction in the number of TB infected cattle herds since NAIT movement control was introduced in 2012. Coupled with the wild animal figures that we have from the government’s records, this strongly suggests that effective movement control has been the real answer to TB in cattle all along.
“The single biggest reservoir, and vector, for bovine tuberculosis in cattle, is cattle. It has always been cattle,” says Mr Prosser.
ends

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