A seroprevalence study carried out between June and September 2016 in the Belgian sheep population showed a significant increase in overall (from 25% to 62%) and between-herd (from 60% to 96%) seroprevalence against Schmallenberg virus (SBV) during this period, indicating the most extensive recirculation of SBV since its original emergence in 2011. SBV recirculation was confirmed by the detection of SBV RNA-positive Culicoides obsoletus complex midges collected in the region of Antwerp in August 2016, reaching a minimum infection rate of 3%. The recirculation of SBV in the largely unprotected ruminant population during summer 2016 will likely cause an increase in the number of arthrogryposis-hydranencephaly cases in newborn ruminants during the coming months.
- entomological monitoring
- Schmallenberg virus