The impact of biting midges on horses: sweet itch and AHSV

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LHarrup
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The impact of biting midges on horses: sweet itch and AHSV

Postby LHarrup » Thu Aug 07, 2014 10:23 am

Hi, my name is Lara Harrup and I am a postdoctoral research scientist at The Pirbright Institute (http://www.pirbright.ac.uk). I am currently working on a project funded by the Horse Race Betting Levy Board investigating the links between horses and Culicoides biting midges. Allergic reactions to the bites of biting midges are the primary cause of sweet itch in horses. Biting midges are also capable of transmitting several pathogens to horses including African horse sickness virus, although this virus is currently exotic to the UK if an outbreak were to occur it could cause up to 90% mortality in affected horse populations.

We are currently trying to gather information on the incidence of sweet itch (insect bite hypersensitivity / summer seasonal recurrent dermatitis) in the UK together with information on husbandry practices which may affect the amount of contact horses have with biting midges. If you own or keep a horse at a stable yard in the UK it would be most appreciated if you could spare 5 minutes to complete the questionnaire available at the link below:

http://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/1367616/e ... ing-midges

Please share this link with anyone you think may be interested in this topic. Thank you in advance for your participation and if you have any further questions or queries please either leave a post on this forum thread or email me directly at lara.harrup@pirbright.ac.uk

Many thanks

Dr Lara Harrup

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