Bluetongue is a non-contagious viral disease affecting sheep, cattle, deer, goats and camels spread by insects.
Enrich Your Learning:
- Bluetongue is a non-contagious, viral disease spread by biting insects. It affects species of ruminants, particularly sheep.
- Bluetongue virus is spread by insects called biting midges (Culicoides spp.). Other biting insects, such as ticks or sheep keds, may also transfer the virus.
- The disease occurs worldwide including India.
What causes Bluetongue?
- Bluetongue causes many different symptoms in affected animals, including ulcers, sores, painful hooves, lameness and reproductive problems.
- Affected animals can have swelling of the tongue (“bluetongue”) which can cause breathing difficulties.
Which animals get bluetongue?
- Bluetongue virus affects many domestic and wild ruminants. The disease is seen most often in sheep, occasionally in goats, and rarely in cattle.
- Severe disease can also occur in wild ruminants, such as white tailed deer, pronghorn, and desert bighorn sheep.
How can animal get bluetongue?
- Bluetongue is not spread by contact between animals. However, the virus may be spread by contaminated objects (fomites), such as surgical equipment and needles.
India and Bluetongue:
- A new vaccine called ‘Raksha Blu’ against the deadly ‘bluetongue’ disease was developed and launched in India on January 8, 2015.
- The Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) has developed diagnostic kits to detect and control ‘bluetongue’ diseases in animals.
- These diagnostic kits have been developed by the Indian Veterinary Research Institute (IVRI) under the ICAR.
- India is the first country in the world to develop a diagnostic kit for bluetongue disease.
- The Indian Veterinary Research Institute (IVRI)is established in 1889 and is based in Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh.
- It is one of the premier research institutions dedicated to livestock research and development of the region.