By NewsDesk @infectiousdiseasenews
Hawai`i agriculture officials report a cow in a herd on Moloka`i has been infected with bovine tuberculosis, Mycobacterium bovis, (bTB).
The infected cow originated from a beef cattle herd in Ho`olehua in the central part of Moloka`i and was temporarily pastured in Mapulehu on the east end of Moloka`i due to the ongoing severe drought.
The recently infected cow was one of 30 in the herd that were tested by a veterinary medical officer from HDOA’s Animal Industry Division on June 22, 2021. The herd is currently isolated and under HDOA quarantine in Ho`olehua. HDOA is working with U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to develop a clean-up plan that will include the depopulation of the infected herd with indemnity being paid to its owner.
Bovine tuberculosis has been present on Moloka`i, particularly on the east end of the island, with sporadic outbreaks in cattle herds since the 1940s.
This is the first detection of the disease in a cattle herd in Hawai`i since an outbreak of bTB on Moloka`i 25 years ago.
“While the detection of bovine tuberculosis has only been confirmed in one animal to date, it is the foremost priority for the department to isolate and control this disease before it can spread to other cattle herds on the island,” said Phyllis Shimabukuro-Geiser, chairperson of the Hawai`i Board of Agriculture. “Of all people, Moloka`i ranchers understand the importance of containing this disease and we appreciate their continued cooperation and assistance.”
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