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Posted Thu Jun 30 2011: from ScienceDaily:
Farm Animal Disease to Increase With Climate Change, Scientists Say
Researchers looked at changes in the behaviour of bluetongue -- a viral disease of cattle and sheep -- from the 1960s to the present day, as well as what could happen to the transmission of the virus 40 years into the future. They found, for the first time, that an outbreak of a disease could be explained by changes to the climate.... The team examined the effect of past climate on the risk of the virus over the past 50 years to understand the specific triggers for disease outbreak over time and throughout geographical regions. This model was then driven forwards in time, using predictive climate models, to the year 2050, to show how the disease may react to future climate change. Using these future projections, researchers found that in northern Europe there could be a 17 percent increase in incidence of the bluetongue virus, compared to 7 percent in southern regions, where it is already much warmer.
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