Thursday, July 05, 2012 -
Kazakh officials announced Thursday that nearly 300 animals have been infected in a new outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) in East Kazakhstan.
Agricultural experts say at least 277 animals show signs of the disease at farms in the district of Urjar close to the country’s border with China, according to a Kazakh government press report.
Laboratory tests show that animals in the villages Karatal, Beket, and Makanchi are among those affected by the infectious plague.
Testing results by the National Reference Center in Kazakh capital Astana indicated that seven out of 11 samples of animals with clinical signs of FMD showed infection by virus RNA.
Officials have responded by imposing quarantine restrictions at the three villages, which include barring the movement of animals and their products in the affected areas.
Meantime, veterinary specialists have launched a vaccination program of other animals in the areas.
This latest outbreak of FMD follows another in Southern Kazakhstan last month that prompted veterinary services to cull around 1,000 animals and vaccinate at least 30,000 others.
Also in June, an extremely virulent but different strain of FMD killed at least 4,000 animals in Kazakhstan’s Central Asian neighbor Kyrgyzstan.
The highly-infectious disease causes blisters in the mouth and feet of cattle, sheep, goats, and other bovids. FMD is greatly feared by farmers whose livelihoods can be completely wiped out by the disease.