Hendra quarantine lifted on New South Wales property

A property in Murwillumbah, New South Wales, has had its Hendra virus quarantine lifted after extensive testing and decontamination measures.

The property was quarantined in June 2014 after the detection of Hendra in a horse.

All horses on the property have now been cleared, with final testing completed for five horses which had contact with the infected horse.

Staff from the Local Land Services, Department of Primary Industries and New South Wales Health had been working closely with the property owners.

The Murwillumbah property was first quarantined on June 20 when Hendra was confirmed in a 31-year-old gelding who died on the property.

The remaining horses on the property were tested over three weeks before the quarantine measures were removed.

There are currently no properties in the state under quarantine for Hendra.

The positive test was the first Hendra case in the state this year.

Last year, Hendra was confirmed in four horses and a dog on four separate properties on the NSW mid north Coast – two properties near Macksville and two near Kempsey.

Authorities urged horse owners to remain vigilant and continue to take steps to minimise exposure of their horses.

Horse owners should talk with their private veterinarian about vaccinating their horses.

Horses should be kept away from flowering and fruiting trees that are attractive to bats, which carry the virus.

Any fruit lying underneath trees should be picked up and disposed of before the horses are returned to the paddock. People are reminded to use good hygiene practices when handling horses.

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