Original Research

Sero-prevalence of bovine brucellosis in the Bojanala Region, North West Province, South Africa 2009–2013

Cheryl M.E. McCrindle, Solly N. Manoto, Bernice Harris
Journal of the South African Veterinary Association | Vol 91 | a2032 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/jsava.v91i0.2032 | © 2020 Cheryl M.E. McCrindle, Solly N. Manoto, Bernice Harris | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 08 November 2019 | Published: 12 August 2020

About the author(s)

Cheryl M.E. McCrindle, School of Health Systems and Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa
Solly N. Manoto, School of Health Systems and Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa
Bernice Harris, School of Health Systems and Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa


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Abstract

Bovine brucellosis affects food safety, food security and human health in rural communities in the North West Province, South Africa. The World Organisation for Animal Health suggests routine sero-surveillance and vaccination of cattle for control and to prevent zoonotic transmission. Although sero-surveillance and subsidised vaccination have been in place for decades, data from Bojanala have not previously been analysed. The aim of this study was to retrospectively analyse historical data on routine sero-surveillance of bovine brucellosis and state subsidised vaccination, in communal, commercial and dairy cattle in the study area. This was a descriptive, cross-sectional retrospective analysis of records from all adult cows bled by the state veterinary services during routine sero-surveillance for bovine brucellosis, in the Bojanala Region, North West Province, between 2009 and 2013. Fewer communal (N = 11 815) and dairy (N = 6696), than commercial beef (N = 28 251) cows, were tested. Overall herd prevalence (33.33%), differed significantly from individual prevalence (3.18%) in all groups. Communal herds had both the highest herd prevalence (38.8%) and the highest individual prevalence (5.2%). Both herd and individual sero-prevalence were lowest in dairy cattle, possibly because registered dairy herds are routinely tested. Over the 5-year study period, only 24 086 (7.15%) of the 342 500 cows eligible for free vaccination, were vaccinated. The annual number of cattle tested was highly variable. Dairy cattle that were regularly tested had a significantly lower herd and individual prevalence. Herd prevalence would be useful for spatial mapping, whilst individual prevalence could better reflect the risk of zoonotic transmission.

Keywords

Bovine brucellosis; sero-surveillance; farming systems; zoonosis; food security; one health

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