Quarantine imposed in Istanbul’s Büyükada after glanders disease infects horses
Fırat Alkaç – ISTANBUL
A quarantine has been imposed in Istanbul’s Büyükada after the highly infectious glanders disease was discovered in some of the island’s horses.
The Provincial Directorate of the Food, Agriculture and Livestock Ministry declared the quarantine in Büyükada, which is the largest of the Princes’ Islands.
Glanders disease, caused by infection with the bacterium Burkholderia mallei, usually by ingestion of contaminated feed or water, was initially detected among horses used for phaeton rides last summer.
Some of the infected horses were treated by veterinarians, while those that failed to respond to treatment were killed.
In October ministry officials visited Büyükada again to conduct further research, examining 1,142 horses, of which 18 horses were infected by glanders. These horses were killed.
Detection of the disease raised concerns among Büyükada locals as the disease can also infect humans.
Mayor of the Princes’ Islands Atilla Aytaç issued a statement concerning the disease.
“Teams of ministry officials have carried out inspections on horses. We are caring for the stray animals on the islands. We declared a quarantine in the islands due to glanders disease last summer,” he said.
Ministry officials said they have extended the quarantine in Büyükada until October 2018.
Officials will visit the island periodically to conduct examinations.
The formation of nodular lesions in the lungs, together with ulceration of the mucous membranes in the upper respiratory tract, are signs of glanders, which occurs primarily in horses, mules and donkeys. The disease can also be contracted by other mammals, including cats, dogs, goats and humans.