Saturday, March 04, 2017

Alpaca TB - warning notice

We have been offered sight of a warning notice which has been circulated to BAS (British Alpaca Society ) members by email, but does not appear on their website. Yet.
 Perhaps it ought to.

Entitled BAS Advisory Notice, we reproduce it in full:
As some of you may be aware, there has been a confirmed bTB breakdown at a large herd and is currently under investigation by APHA . We are unable to name the herd as we have not yet had their permission to do so.

Whilst there are breakdowns or suspected breakdowns in existence several times a year in the camelid community, this particular breakdown is significant due to the size of the herd.

While the BAS has no more rights than individuals to access ‘personal’ information from government agencies due to data protection, we are active in assisting where we can and where the affected farm(s) permit. After another herd confirmed disease from alpacas purchased from what is now believed to be the ‘source’ holding, all farms that were known to have had contact were informed back in December 2016 and some have already been tested clear.

Due to the time it takes for APHA to prove disease, there has been a delay in APHA tracing and contacting farms that have moved or purchased alpacas from the infected source holding. Earlier this week, the BAS were contacted by APHA to help with the tracings. The BAS were able to confirm the three farms that had purchased registered alpacas from this ‘source’ holding in the last year and those farms have all been contacted by BAS representatives and are being contacted by APHA now.

We would urge our members to re acquaint themselves with our guidance regarding biosecurity and contact us if they have any concerns.

Please note for the reasons already stated we are unable to give out details unless we have the express permission of the party/parties concerned.

Clearly the BAS only have records of animals which have been registered. If you have purchased, moved or have bred with males from a holding where you think there may be cause for concern and have not yet been contacted by APHA, then we urge you to please contact the BAS or APHA and we can help guide you on the most appropriate course of action. It is imperative that any alpacas that have had dangerous contact with a herd that is known to have bTB, are thoroughly tested in accordance with the 2016 Camelid bTB Testing Scenario Document and Flow Chart which can be found on the BAS website.

With regard to shows, and in particular the upcoming National Show, our bio-security measures at shows have been approved by the BVCS and APHA and shown to be robust over many years; bio security is of paramount importance and the last thing any of us want is to knowingly allow alpacas to shows that have come from dangerous contacts.

We have been closely monitoring the situation and will continue to do so.

If you have any questions at all please contact us either through, or

Thank you for your time and attention in this important matter.

BAS Board

Now this outbreak must have been rumbling for some months (it takes APHA two months at least to confirm m.bovis by culture) and back tracing of pedigree animals is still ongoing. So the timing of this notice is startling, appearing just a couple of weeks before their National Show - [link] on 25th and 26th March.

NB. This picture was snapped at a previous 'National' alpaca show.

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