Farmscape for March 22, 2017
The scope of a new strain of flu in pigs has shown signs of expanding.
The primary influenza season typically runs from late October, early November until about early April.
Dr. Susan Detmer, a veterinary pathologist with the Western College of Veterinary Medicine, says over the last three years we've been seeing three different types of flu viruses in pigs in western Canada.
Clip-Dr. Susan Detmer-Western College of Veterinary Medicine:
We saw this H1N1 virus that was very classical similar to the viruses that were seen prior to 1990 that went a long time in western Canada.
The other viruses we saw were H3N2 viruses and then we would also see pandemic virus and it was a fairly even three way split between those three different viruses in our region.
Over the last year we have seen a decrease in both pandemic and the H3N2 and an increase in what's called an H1N2 virus and this virus has been dominating over the last year in western Canada.
The new strain was predominantly seen in Manitoba where most of the pigs in western Canada are.
They first saw the strain in 2013 and then it began to increase in frequency of detection in Manitoba over the last three to four years but over the last year and a half we've had several introductions into Alberta and Saskatchewan with this virus so it's started to move out of that dense area of pig production in southeast Manitoba.
Dr. Detmer says probably the biggest challenge the pork industry faces is finding a vaccine that works on the farm and changes in the viruses.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.
*Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork