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Grasshoppers Can Transmit Virus to Livestock

Rangeland plants may be harboring a virus that grasshoppers are transmitting to cattle, horses and other hoofed mammals, according to a published research study by Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists.

A recent outbreak of vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) in the southwest United States has disrupted rodeos and prompted quarantines. VSV is a viral disease that causes sporadic outbreaks in the United States, most recently in 2006.

Barbara Drolet at the ARS Arthropod-Borne Animal Diseases Research Laboratory (ABADRL) in Laramie, Wyo., and Justin Derner at the ARS High Plains Grasslands Research Station in Cheyenne, Wyo., have shown that under laboratory conditions, rangeland plants can harbor VSV and pass the virus to grazing grasshoppers.
 
 

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