Bluetongue virus

Page last updated: Monday, 16 October 2017 - 10:52am

Please note: This content may be out of date and is currently under review.

Bluetongue virus can infect all ruminants but it usually only causes serious disease in sheep. Cattle may be infected with the virus but rarely show disease.

An insect vector spreads the virus and it only occurs where the vector is present.

Although bluetongue virus is present in a monitored zone across northern Australia, bluetongue disease has never been reported in Australia. The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development conducts surveillance for bluetongue virus in Western Australia as part of the National Arbovirus Monitoring Program (NAMP).

Bluetongue virus is a reportable disease

Bluetongue virus (BTV) disease is a reportable animal disease under the Biosecurity and Agriculture Management Act 2007. The presence or suspicion of this disease must be reported immediately to the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD).

To report signs of bluetongue disease, contact:

  • your local veterinarian or DPIRD veterinarian
  • after hours: Emergency Animal Disease hotline on 1800 675 888.

Any detection of bluetongue virus antibodies on serum testing by your veterinarian is also reportable.

Contact information

Marion Seymour
+61 (0)8 9651 0534