Equine Abortions Remain Up in Central Kentucky; Most Recent Weekly Total Down

Through the first seven weeks of the year, the number of equine abortions remained up in Kentucky when compared to 2002. The University of Kentucky's Livestock Disease Diagnostic Center (LDDC) reported on Feb. 20 that it had received 221 aborted fetuses for evaluation in 2003 compared to 190 last year through the same period. During the year's seventh week, the number in 2003 was down -- 25 compared to 28 in 2002.

Scientists associated with the LDDC say they have not seen signs consistent with another outbreak of MRLS. They also say the number may be up because more mares are foaling early this year than they were last year. Also, because of a heightened awareness of MRLS, horsemen may be submitting more aborted fetuses to the LDDC.