A bluetongue outbreak is being investigated in north-west England. The possible outbreak concerns animals (including two sheep) in north Shropshire and Greater Manchester.

Bluetongue is a midge-spread virus, which was first detected in the UK in September. There are currently 66 premises now in south-east England according to The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

If bluetongue is confirmed in these latest tests, Surveillance and Protection Zones, which have already been established in the south east, will be extended to cover most of Wales, north-west England and the Bristol Channel area.

Signs and symptoms of the bluetongue virus:

High fever
Excessive salivation
Swelling of the head and neck
Lameness
Discolouration of the tongue

This possible bluetongue outbreak, concerning two sheep and other animals, is currently being investigated in north Shropshire and Greater Manchester.

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