Denmark says mink coronavirus strain ‘most likely eradicated’

Ireland signals likely end to fur farming with cull of 120,000 mink

Dr Mark Dalton, spokesman for Veterinary Ireland said the fact a coronavirus mutation had been found in mink in Denmark, only further added to the necessity to close the Irish mink farms.

The Department of Health has indicated that the continued farming of mink represents an ongoing risk of additional mink-adapted SARS-CoV-2 variants emerging and, therefore, it has recommended that farmed mink in Ireland should be culled to minimise or eliminate this risk.

The Danish minister in charge of farming resigned Wednesday as he took the blame for the government ordering the culling of all farmed mink without having the necessary legislation in place first.

She also told them, "Rather, ODA and the state veterinarian have been engaged with the OR mink industry providing information on biosecurity, as well as specific steps to take in order to prevent the introduction of SARS-CoV-2 into mink farms".

TESTING BY THE HSE of all workers at mink farms and their families has identified no positive Covid-19 cases.

The move followed the cull ordered in Denmark despite the government lacking a legal basis for killing healthy animals.

Mink on a farm in Denmark ahead of a national cull, 06-11-2020.

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Irish authorities are planning a nationwide cull of minks over fears the animals may have a mutated version of the coronavirus previously detected in Denmark, an agriculture ministry spokesman said Thursday. "Mainly because of the number of mink infected with COVID-19".

Denmark breeds mink for their farmers and fur had promised that the order will finish their enterprise.

The Department of Agriculture has this week informed the owners of the country's three remaining mink farms that they should cull their mink population to stop the spread of a potentially muted coronavirus. "I would also mention that minks escape regularly, so you don't want that risk of infecting the wild animal population, either".

Nationally, the proportion of Covid-19 cases in humans that came from mink is falling, the institute said.

Viruses such as the novel coronavirus that emerged in China late past year mutate constantly and new variants are not necessarily worse than the previous ones.

It said the advice also includes strict adherence to the HSE public health guidelines on COVID 19.

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