Britain braces for deadly sheep virus
London, Aug 8 (IANS) A virus that causes lambs and calves to be born dead or with serious deformities could spread across Britain by the end of year, experts warned Wednesday.
They said that the Schmallenberg virus - found on 276 British farms since it first entered the country last year - has not died out as hoped, Daily Mail reported.
It has already killed hundreds of animals in southern and eastern England, and could spread north and west and into Wales and Scotland in the coming months.
Some farmers have reported up to 50 percent of their lambs affected, although the average rate of affected newborns per farm is only 2 to 5 percent, the Mail said.
The disease is thought to be spread by midges - tiny bloodsucking insects which blow into England from continental Europe where Schmallenberg disease has hit thousands of farms in eight countries.
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