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SDSU Animal Disease Lab monitors anthrax in the state08/15/2008BROOKINGS, S.D. — Although southeastern South Dakota is experiencing some small anthrax outbreaks in cattle, South Dakota State University experts say there’s no need for great concern. The Animal Disease Research and Diagnostic Laboratory (ADRDL) is carefully following it.Dr. Russ Daly, extension veterinarian and SDSU assistant professor, keeps tabs on anthrax cases in the state.Thus far this year, samples from three herds in Douglas and Hutchinson Counties have tested positive for a relatively small anthrax outbreak confined to cattle.Daly explained that the anthrax infecting cattle herds comes from a bacteria found naturally in the environment, not the weapons-grade anthrax used criminally.“We know that the environment – weather, pasture conditions – has a lot to do with cases popping up,” Daly said.Anthrax isn’t generally spread from animal to animal. Instead, cattle eat bacterial spores in pasture soil or grass. Inside the animal’s body, bacteria reproduce rapidly and produce a fatal toxin.Read On
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