Foot and mouth found in second culled herd
LONDON (Reuters) - Cattle culled at a second farm in southern England have tested positive for foot and mouth disease, the agriculture ministry said on Friday.
The herd was at a farm in Egham, in Surrey, close to one at which the disease was first found on Tuesday.
"Laboratory tests have today confirmed the presence of foot and mouth disease in the cattle herd ... where culling was completed yesterday," a ministry statement said.
Tests have shown it is likely that the first case is the same strain as that found in two previous outbreaks in August, 30 miles away, which is suspected to have been due to biosecurity breaches in a government-funded laboratory.
Friday's confirmation of foot and mouth in the slaughtered herd came as movement restrictions on susceptible animals were eased in Wales and Scotland.
Farmers there are now able to take their animals directly to abattoirs for slaughter, though they cannot trade or move animals for any other reason.
The general ban continues in England, though limited movements of animals are being allowed for immediate welfare issues such as returning animals to farms from markets and shows, subject to inspection.
A temporary control zone in the eastern English county of Norfolk, which was put in place after a suspected case was found on a farm, was lifted after laboratory tests proved negative on Thursday.
The European Union has banned British exports of meat, live animals and dairy products until October 15.
Before the latest outbreak EU veterinary experts had agreed to declare Britain free of foot and mouth from November 9 and lift an export ban imposed after the disease was found on two farms in July and August.
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