By ERIN RYDER, TheHorse.com News Editor
September 30, 2008, Article # 12808
NEARLY 2,2000 EQUIDS have died in an outbreak of African horse sickness in the country of Ethiopia, according to a report released by the Office International des Epizooties (OIE), also known as the World Organization for Animal Health.
The outbreak began in March of this year. Cases are clustered in 15 areas in the western portion of the country, which is located north of Kenya. Horses, mules, and donkeys have been affected, and the apparent case fatality rate is 54.63%. The susceptible population is numbered at 46,451 equids.
While previous outbreaks in the country were due to serotypes -6 and -9, this outbreak has been caused by serotype-2. Thus far 7,416 animals have been vaccinated against serotype-9 in response. However, the report noted that animals vaccinated against serotype-9 have been affected in this outbreak.
The OIE report was submitted Sept. 19 by Dr. Berhe Gebreegziabher, head of the Animal and Plant Health Regulatory Department in the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Addis Abeba, Ethiopia.