Last week, experts of Latvian Food and Veterinary Service registered a case of African swine fever infection among domestic pigs in Salacgriva, Ainazi Parish. Infection has been confirmed in a small backyard farm that had eight pigs.
The infected pigs were not previously registered with the Agriculture Data Centre, which means the backyard farm was an illegal establishment. This is why FVS has launched litigation in regard to administrative violation.
FVS has established a protection area in 3 km radius around the backyard farm. An additional monitoring area has also been set up in a 10 km radius. Domestic and wild pig health monitoring activities will be strengthened in those areas. The same applies to the transport of pigs in and out of the protected area. It is prohibited to move around pigs from one farm to another within the protected area. It is also prohibited to carry pork out of the protected area after 40 days of discovering the disease, first termination of infected animals and initial disinfection of affected farms.
As it is known, African swine fever infection has been confirmed in three domestic pig housings in Estonia. ASF was confirmed in wild boars in Estonia on 8 September 2014. However, there have not been any reports of domestic pigs catching the disease until now.
Two out of three domestic pig housings are part of commercial farms in Vilande. Both belong to the same owner. Both farms have a total of 546 pigs. ASF has been confirmed for one domestic pig in Valga, not far from the Latvian border, as reported by Food and Veterinary Service.
Estonian Food and Veterinary Service has launched ASF prevention measures.
All three housings affected by ASF are located in previously quarantined zones, in which ASF infection cases are regularly found for wild boars.
BNN had previously reported that 396 cases of ASF infection within wild boar populations have been registered in Latgale and Vidzeme in 2015. Because of high mortality caused by the disease, not only does the infection remain in the aforementioned territories, but also continues to spread, infecting new territories and causing losses for hunting unions and Latvia’s pig-breeding industry.
Wild boars have become a natural reservoir for the disease in Latvia. Because of this, Food and Veterinary Service has prepared a letter for Latvian municipalities with a request to allow municipal hunting coordination commissions to use the rights stated in the Hunting Law – allow wild boar hunts to limit their population and spread of the disease.