Drop in bovine TB levels.

Latest official figures show that the number of cattle slaughtered because of bovine TB fell by 25% over the first three months of this year to just over 9,000.  The drop was not consistent across the country, however, with big falls in some hotspot areas including much of the South West and Dyfed (Wales) but increases in incidence in some counties, notable Staffordshire.

A number of reasons have been suggested including improved controls, a switch to Dutch tuberculin and the naturally fluctuating nature of TB incidence.

Defra have urged caution when interpreting short term changes suggesting that it will take some time to be clear whether this is an actual change in the incidence trend or some statistical anomaly.

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