Published On: Tue, Oct 1st, 2013

Texas: Anthrax confirmed in two sable antelopes

The first cases of anthrax in Texas have been confirmed in two sable antelopes, according to a Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) press release today.

Sable antelope Image/Video Screen Shot

Sable antelope
Image/Video Screen Shot

The sable antelopes were from Edwards County, near Barksdale, Texas. The affected premises has only exotic animals, so no domestic livestock are involved in this case.

The TAHC has issued a quarantine requiring proper disposal of carcasses before the quarantine can be released. Burning destroys the causative agent, preventing soil contamination and reducing the chances of future outbreaks.

“The TAHC will continue to closely monitor the situation for possible new cases across the state. Producers are encouraged to consult their veterinary practitioner or local TAHC office if they suspect they are having an anthrax outbreak or if they have questions about the disease or vaccination of livestock,” Dr. T.R. Lansford, TAHC Assistant Executive Director for Animal Health Programs, said.

Anthrax is a pathogen in livestock and wild animals. Some of the more common herbivores are cattle, sheep, goats, horses, camels and deers.

Anthrax is a very serious disease of livestock because it can potentially cause the rapid loss of a large number of animals in a very short time. Affected animals are often found dead with no illness detected.

It infects humans primarily through occupational or incidental exposure with infected animals of theirskins.

Anthrax is caused by the bacterium, Bacillus anthracis. This spore forming bacteria can survive in the environment for years because of its ability to resist heat, cold, drying, etc. this is usually the infectious stage of anthrax.

Bacillus anthracis

Anthrax Image/CIA

When conditions become favorable, the spores germinate into colonies of bacteria. An example would be a grazing cow ingests spores that in the cow, germinate, grow spread and eventually kill the animal.

The bacteria will form spores in the carcass and then return to the soil to infect other animals. The vegetative form is rarely implicated in transmission.

There are no reports of person-to-person transmission of anthrax. People get anthrax by handling contaminated animal or animal products, consuming undercooked meat of infected animals and more recently, intentional release of spores.

There are three types of human anthrax with differing degrees of seriousness: cutaneous, gastrointestinal and inhalation.

There was at least two anthrax case reported in Texas in 2012. The first case was in a white tailed deer found near Uvalde.  A second case was reported in a yearling female sheep in Irion County.

For more infectious disease news and information, visit and “like” the Infectious Disease News Facebook page

On the DISPATCH: Headlines  Local  Opinion

Subscribe to Weekly Newsletter

* indicates required

About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today and hosts the podcast, Outbreak News Interviews on iTunes, Stitcher and Spotify Robert is politically Independent and a born again Christian Follow @bactiman63

Displaying 1 Comments
Have Your Say
  1. Texas reports anthrax case in Tom Green County cow - The Global Dispatch says:

    […] In early October, the TAHC reported on anthrax in two sable antelopes in Edwards County. […]

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Sign up for our Weekly Newsletter



At the Movies

Pin It