The presence of antibodies against bovine herpesvirus 1 (BHV-1), bovid herpesvirus 6 (BHV-6), herpesvirus of Cervidae type 1 (HVC-1), reindeer herpesvirus, bovine herpesvirus 2 (BHV-2) and bovid herpesvirus 4 (BHV-4) was investigated in wild ruminants of France and Belgium between 1981 and 1986. There were no animals serologically positive for BHV-4. Antibodies against BHV-2 were demonstrated in roe deer (Cervus capreolus) (<1%) and chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra) (1%) in France. Animals seropositive to the four related viruses (BHV-1, BHV-6, HVC-1, reindeer herpesvirus) were detected in red deer (Cervus elaphus) in France and Belgium (1% and 11%, respectively), in roe deer (<1%) from France, in chamois (4%) in France and in ibex (Capra ibex) (4%) from France. The presence of antibodies against HVC-1, especially in red deer from Belgium, may suggest that wild ruminants in continental Europe are now infected with this virus, which previously has been isolated only in Scotland.
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Vol. 24 • No. 2