Archive for April 3rd, 2012

Mysterious New Lamb Disease in Europe From Africa? Part 2

posted by Maleekie Ambularie @ 17:08 PM
April 3, 2012

 Dr. Ad Versery:  Because the new virus carries its name, the small German town of Schmallenberg, Germany, is particularly worried about the way the disease will hurt its heretofore prosperous economy––one based on farming and tourism.

 The town’s mayor, Bernard Halbe, lamented to Nick Meo of the, “Plenty of us aren’t very happy that our town’s name is being used across Europe to describe this new disease.”

 Before this outbreak, the town was one of the envies of the continent.  “the unemployment rate, at three per cent, is one of the lowest in Europe – depends on agriculture and tourism, both of which rely on public confidence.” 

 Meo describes Schmallenberg as:  “a picturesque district of 26,000 people in central Germany, a deadly new virus was born.”  Before the disease outbreak, the town’s tourism department had worked hard to put forth an image “showing happy families hiking and picnicking. . . . a healthy place for holidays close to nature.”

 For the last two years, its local government had helped farmers’ wives to earn money hosting “city families . . . to enjoy life on a real working farm.”  But “becoming ground zero in an international disease outbreak has put all of this in doubt.”  Now, Halbe says, “Some farms have been devastated.”

 With the disease spreading to England, Belgium, Holland, etc., the concern now is that people will stop buying beef and lamb.  This could bring significant damage both to the Euro market and to farmers’ incomes.  It is estimated that it will take a year or more to find a vaccine for this new virus, experts say.

 Maleekie Ambularie:  So what do they see as the answer?  Blame it all on Africa!  Why does this all sound so familiar?  German farmers speculate that this disease of deformed lambs “may be from Africa because it resembles a similar disease called Blue Tongue that arrived a few years ago.”

 But The Center for Food Security & Public Health at Iowa State University says:  “The bluetongue virus has been found in many parts of the world including Africa, Europe, the Middle East, Australia, the South Pacific, North and South America, and parts of Asia. The virus is present in some regions without associated clinical disease. In the United States, the distribution of the vector limits infections to the southern and western states.” 

 And the symptoms of Blue Tongue and Schmallenberg are no where near alike.  Blue tongue is like a false Foot-and-Mouth Disease.  It may bring sore muzzles, erosions, ulcerations, lameness and inflammation, but not defective births.  Schmallenberg farmers should get their facts straight!

 Dr. Ad Versery:  Science must stop this virus before it spreads to the human population.  Remember what Christian prayer books teach: God is The One “Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases (Psalms 103: 3).”

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