Bluetongue Confirmed & Cougar Attack

Bluetongue Confirmed & Cougar Attack

Bluetongue Confirmed & Cougar Attack. I’m Greg Martin with today’s Northwest Report.

The Washington Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory located in the Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine has confirmed bluetongue virus in 42 animals submitted from Washington and Idaho this fall. Most of the samples submitted to were from white-tailed deer but other affected species included cows, domestic sheep, bighorn sheep, mule deer and a yak. What makes this especially critical is the bluetongue can affect international trade. Bluetongue infections can both sicken and kill large numbers of animals depending on the species.

People in the Canby, Oregon vicinity are on alert after a cougar is reported to have killed 11 sheep. Livestock owners and residents in general are concerned after the attack. A government tracker is looking for the cougar. Michelle Dennehy, Wildlife Communications Coordinator with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife says farmers can protect themselves.

DENNEHY: We estimate there’s about 6000 cougars in Oregon. They’ve grown steadily since the 1960’s. A landowner has the legal right to kill a cougar that’s causing damage such as killing livestock without a permit, however they do need to let us know about it. Of course if the damage is in town there’s rules about discharging a firearm in town. So if you do have livestock and you’re within city limits you’re advised to call 911.

That’s today’s Northwest Report. I’m Greg Martin on the Ag Information Network of the West.

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