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The spatial pattern and epidemiology of backyard pig farming and other low bio-security pig production systems and their role in the occurrence of classical swine fever (CSF) is described and evaluated. A spatial Bayesian model was used to explore the risk factors, including human demographics, socioeconomic and environmental factors. The analyses were performed for Bulgaria, which has a large number of backyard farms (96% of all pig farms in the country are classified as backyard farms), and it is one of the countries for which both backyard pig and farm counts were available. Results reveal that the high-risk areas are typically concentrated in areas with small family farms, high numbers of outgoing pig shipments and low levels of personal consumption (i.e. economically deprived areas). Identification of risk factors and high-risk areas for CSF will allow to targeting risk-based surveillance strategies leading to prevention, control and, ultimately, elimination of the disease in Bulgaria and other countries with similar socio-epidemiological conditions.
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