Christine Middlemiss – 2021 Statement on Geronimo the Alpaca

The statement made by Christine Middlemiss, the Chief Veterinary Officer, on 10 December 2021.

This animal tested positive for bovine tuberculosis on two separate occasions using highly specific tests. Due to the complexity of the disease, further testing has not enabled us to use Whole Genome Sequencing to try to understand how the animal became infected in the first place.

Our sympathies remain with all those with animals affected by this terrible disease which devastates farmers’ livelihoods. It is important to remember that infected animals can spread the disease to both animals and people before displaying clinical signs, which is why we take action quickly to limit the risk of the disease spreading. We are grateful for the cooperation of livestock farmers to allow this to happen.