How to prevent horses from getting Equine Protozoal Myeloencephalitis (EPM) from opossums in New Jersey | Opossum

How to prevent horses from getting Equine Protozoal Myeloencephalitis (EPM) from opossums

Opossums can transmit Equine Protozoal Myeloencephalitis (EPM) to horses. It is caused by a protozoal parasite whose eggs are shed in opossum feces. Infected animals show various signs of illness, including symptoms of central nervous system disease. This disease can also be transmitted to other wildlife (raccoons and skunks) and domestic pets (cats).

While the risk of an opossum transmitting the disease to a horse is not high, it can be minimized by preventing opossums from getting into domestic animal food and water through secure storage and animal-proofing of barns and other buildings.

Laws and regulations to be aware of

While we attempt to provide guidance about state and federal regulations pertaining to specific species and control techniques, we do not provide information about local jurisdictions (city, town, county, etc.) where regulations may be more restrictive, especially as it applies to discharge of firearms, transport of animals or use of trapping equipment. Contact your local city or county government to inquire further. No guarantee is made that information (or lack of information) associated with a species or control technique is completely accurate or current. You should become familiar with federal, state and local laws before beginning any wildlife control activities.

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