African swine fever virus (ASFV) in Poland: Prevalence in a wild boar population (2017–2018)

https://doi.org/10.17221/105/2019-VETMEDCitation:Frant M., Lyjak M., Bocian L., Barszcz A., Niemczuk K., Wozniakowski G. (2020): African swine fever virus (ASFV) in Poland: Prevalence in a wild boar population (2017–2018). Veterinarni Medicina, 65: 143-158.
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African swine fever (ASF) was first described in 1921 in Kenya. The latest epidemic of ASF started in 2007 in Georgia. The virus was introduced to Poland in 2014. Since the beginning of the epidemics, the National Veterinary Research Institute in Pulawy (NVRI) has been testing wild boar samples from restricted areas and other parts of Poland to conduct passive and active surveillance for ASFV in these groups of animals. The aim of this study was to summarise the last two years of the ASF epidemiological status in Poland and the attempt to find disease patterns in the wild boar population. The period between 2017 and 2018 brought a massive number of new ASF cases in Poland. The number of ASF-positive wild boars jumped from 91 in 2016 to 1 140 in 2017 (approximately a 12 × increase), and 2018 was even worse, with the disease affecting 4 083 animals (2 435 cases; one case could even be 10 animals or more if they are found in one place next to each other). The percentage of positive wild boars found dead (passive surveillance) in the restricted area increased in 2018 to 73.1% from 70.8% in 2017. The chance of obtaining positive results in this group was six times higher in December and 4.5 times higher in January than in August and September. The percentage of positive wild boars detected through active surveillance reached 1.5% in 2018. The data suggested that, not only in Poland, but also in other ASF-affected countries, during the epizootic stage of the disease spread the most important measure is an effective passive surveillance of dead wild boars especially, in the winter season rather than in the summer.

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