A total of 2500 samples have been taken as investigations continue following the discovery of past exposure to bluetongue virus detected in several 12-month-old dairy heifers last month.
Victoria’s chief veterinary officer Dr Charles Milne said preliminary results already revealed some information with final results to be known this week or early next week.
‘‘The preliminary results indicate the initial premises is not the only affected premises,’’ he said.
The sampling, which was completed on Thursday last week, saw 98 herds of cattle tested within a 5km radius of the initial farm at Bamawm, 21km north-west of Rochester.
‘‘All farms will be informed of the results of testing on their premises in due course and public meetings will be held in the area so the public can see and hear what we’ve done,’’ Dr Milne said.
‘‘We’re really grateful for the co-operation of the farmers.’’
Bluetongue is a viral disease of livestock spread by flying insects known as midges. All ruminants are susceptible, including cattle, sheep, goats, buffalo, camelids and deer.
BTV does not spread rapidly, as it is not spread directly from animal to animal.
There is no risk to humans from BTV, nor is there any food safety issue associated with livestock products.
While BTV is endemic in northern Australia, Victoria, along with the rest of southern Australia, has previously been classified as being free of BTV.