State Veterinarian Nora Wineland, DVM, released the following statement regarding two newly identified bovine tuberculosis (TB) infected herds.
“Movement investigations from the bovine TB positive herd identified in January 2020 in Alcona County led to the finding of two additional infected herds. One herd is in Allegan County and will be Michigan’s 78th infected herd identified since 1998. The other is a feedlot in Saginaw County, which is the 6th infected feedlot in the same timeframe. Prior to finding infection in the Alcona County herd, animals were moved into these two herds.
“When an infected herd is found, an investigation into the location of potentially exposed animals is routinely done. It was through this investigation that the newly infected herds were found. The ability to quickly identify and track movements of animals out of infected herds is an important tool to prevent further spread of disease. Cattle surveillance will be carried out around the infected herds. Cattle producers in the surveillance area will be contacted directly.”
The Allegan County herd was confirmed positive on March 10, 2020, and the Saginaw County feedlot was confirmed positive on March 16, 2020, by the National Veterinary Services Laboratories.
Bovine TB is a bacterial disease primarily affecting cattle; however, it can be spread between wildlife populations and other mammals, including humans. Michigan has been working to eradicate bovine TB since 1994 when a hunter harvested whitetail deer was found positive in Alpena County.