A new bluetongue protection zone has been set up after a fresh case of the animal disease was identified, the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs confirmed on Wednesday.
The case was found near Poole, in Dorset, southern England and the protection zone covers the whole of Dorset and the New Forest, the department said in a statement.
The latest case was identified during routine pre-movement testing. As a result of the discovery, the wider surveillance zone which covers much of England has also been extended into southeast Wales as well as all of Somerset and Devon, both next to Dorset.
Bluetongue was first confirmed in Britain in East Anglia on Sept. 28 last year and other cases were in southeast England.
The virus is spread by a species of midge and can be fatal to animals such as sheep and cows.
(Xinhua News Agency February 14, 2008)