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Tuesday, 11 April 1972
Page: 913

Senator LAWRIE (QUEENSLAND) - I direct a question to the Minister for Health about the horses that were put into quarantine just west of Sydney. Can the Minister now inform the Senate of the position regarding the quarantine of these horses? Have they been released from quarantine and is Australia free of all risk of any imported sickness spreading from them?

Senator Sir KENNETH ANDERSON - The question refers to the decision to quarantine, under special conditions, the horses that came out on a special vessel called the 'Dona Clausen'. The horses - and I think a donkey as well - were quarantined in New South Wales, Victoria and Western Australia. I am happy to say that they are now considered to be free of possible disease. Laboratory investigations confirmed the diagnosis of strangles and that there was no involvement with exotic viruses. Accordingly the horses were released from quarantine yesterday. It is true that a foal was born during the quarantine period at one of the stations. The temporary quarantine station at Castlereagh Stud, Penrith, New South Wales, was the cause of some anxiety which I am sure was quite unfounded. Once one starts to quarantine a large number of horses one has to put them where stables are available. They cannot be put out in the open. I am happy to say that everything went as we had hoped it would. The Castlereagh Stud will remain unstocked until it can be disinfected properly to ensure that no residual infection remains on the property.

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