Bovine Tuberculosis investigation ongoing in southeast Alberta, southwest Saskatchewan
November 1, 2016
In late September, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) notified the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) that a case of Bovine TB had been detected in a cow from Alberta when it was slaughtered in the United States. The CFIA has initiated an investigation into the case and is working with provincial agriculture and health authorities.
Based on the current epidemiological information, CFIA veterinarians and inspectors will be making contact with cattle producers in the following areas:
Special Area No. 2
Special Area No. 3
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Acadia No. 34
Cypress County (North of Medicine Hat)
Rural Municipalities south of the South Saskatchewan River and west of Highway 4
Tracing work is currently underway to identify animals that may have been exposed to Bovine TB at individual premises and/or the Buffalo-Atlee and Suffield Block community pastures.
Situation as of November 8, 2016
There is one confirmed case of Bovine TB. The source of the infection is unknown.
There is one infected herd located on three premises and the removal and humane destruction of animals is continuing.
There are approximately 33 farms in Alberta and 2 farms in Saskatchewan under quarantine and movement controls but this may change as the investigation continues.
CFIA inspectors are conducting on-farm testing and tracing of potentially exposed animals.
Additional staff have been brought to the region to support the investigation.
As this investigation involves a significant number of herds and requires the tracing of the movement of animals for the past five years plus testing, it is not expected to be completed for several months.
Movement of cattle and other animals
Only premises that have been placed under quarantine by the CFIA are prevented from moving animals without permission. Producers in the general investigation area that have not been contacted by the CFIA are allowed to move animals (including sending cattle to auction markets and feed lots) but must comply with livestock identification requirements.
Livestock identification and traceability
Premises that are under quarantine must not move any animals without permission from the CFIA.
Quarantine and testing
As the disease investigation proceeds, additional premises may need to be quarantined while cattle are tested for Bovine TB. The CFIA has prepared information for producers who are contacted in the course of a disease investigation.
What to expect if your farm is under investigation
Additional information and guidance from CFIA staff will be provided to individual producers if their animals are required to be quarantined. Testing is completed as quickly as possible. Quarantines remain in effect until all susceptible animals have tested negative for the disease.
If an animal under quarantine tests positive for Bovine TB, the CFIA will follow established procedures for destruction and compensation
What to expect if your animals are infected
Animal Health Compensation – What to expect when an animal is ordered destroyed
The priority area for the CFIA investigation is domestic livestock. The Agency is working with the Government of Alberta to ensure that any risks associated with TB in wildlife are included in the investigation. Genetic analysis showed that the Bovine TB organism from the infected cow is not the same as any strains detected in Canadian domestic animals or wildlife to date.
Producers whose animals are under quarantine and subject to movement controls will be contacted by local CFIA staff who will respond to specific questions about individual situations.
General questions about Bovine TB or the current investigation will be managed by email.
–Canadian Food Inspection Agency