The Montana Department of Livestock says a brucellosis-infected cow from a Madison County ranch was identified during a voluntary whole-herd test. The animal was euthanized, and the infection confirmed at the National Veterinary Services Laboratories in Iowa. The cow tested negative last year.
Officials say past cases of brucellosis in livestock were the result of transmission from infected wild elk. Montana’s Livestock agency issued a press-release Monday, but officials could not be reached for comment by deadline.
DOL’s press release did not specify when the discovery was made or identify the specific ranch which is now under quarantine. An epidemiological investigation is underway.
The infected animal was discovered in Montana’s Designated Surveillance Area, a four-county zone in southwest Montana where risk of brucellosis transmission from elk runs high. Montana’s Department of Livestock says this is the tenth brucellosis affected herd found since the creation of the DSA in 2010. Livestock officials say due to current USDA regulations and the surveillance area, Montana is not at risk of losing its brucellosis free status.