The Bluetongue virus has been found in an imported cow, Defra said yesterday.
The cow is on a farm near Middlesbrough, which is outside the existing Bluetongue protection and surveillance zones, a Defra spokeswoman said.
The animal was originally from within a protection zone in Lower Saxony, Germany.
The virus was detected through routine post-import testing carried out on all Bluetongue susceptible animals entering the UK.
The farm has been placed under restrictions and a full epidemiological investigation is under way.
The cow is expected to be culled this afternoon, as it potentially provides a source of infection for the local midge population, and therefore other animals, Defra said.
There was currently no evidence that the virus was circulating in the area, and there would therefore there would be no changes to the existing Bluetongue zones and no new zones would be established.
Fred Landeg, acting chief veterinary officer, said: "Importers need to carefully consider the potential risks to UK industry as a whole from importing animals from Bluetongue Restricted Zones."Reuse content