Authorities feel such events are an ideal opportunity to sample a wide selection of horses in a single place. While many of the horses will have already been vaccinated or are immune (having recovered from infection), the information on the current level of infection, and the proportion of vaccinated and recovered horses, will provide data to help support a future case for freedom from active disease in these areas.
The NSW Department of Primary Industries said that for the first time since the initial outbreak in August, the number of "resolved" properties now outnumbered infected properties. There have now been no new infections reported in the last seven days; during the peak of the outbreak more than 100 properties where becoming infected each week.
"This is a clear indicator that disease progression has slowed and that the control strategy is working," the DPI said.