ASF is a virus that affects pigs, wild boar, warthogs and American wild pigs and is extremely contagious. Due to the recent identification of the virus in Belgium, we are urging all of our pig owners to ensure they are up to speed with their biosecurity. Please make sure that any vehicles, animals and people that are in contact with your pigs are all following strict biosecurity protocols. For guidance on biosecurity, visit the AHDB Pork website.
The main clinical signs of ASF are as follows:
• lack of appetite
• lack of energy
• sudden death with few signs beforehand
Other signs can include: vomiting, diarrhoea, red or darkened skin on the ears and snout, eye and nasal discharge, struggling to breath, coughing, abortions, an unsteady gait and weakness.
Please be aware that all age groups are equally susceptible so please keep an eye for these signs.
The African Swine Fever virus can be spread by:
Pigs eating contaminated meat/ meat products
Contact with infected pigs/ their faeces/ or their bodily fluids
Contact with anything contaminated by the ASF virus. This can include people and their clothing, vehicles and equipment.
Please remember that it is illegal to feed human food and food scraps to pigs and wild boar. We do have both wild boar and feral pigs that roam on arable and horticultural farms here in the UK, so please make sure not discard any human food waste anywhere they could eat it.
For any more information, please contact one of our farm vets on 01327 350239.
African Swine Fever is a notifiable animal disease. If you suspect it, you must report it immediately by calling the Defra Rural Services Helpline on 03000 200 301.