Massive Unexplained Sheep Death Across Iceland - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Massive Unexplained Sheep Death Across Iceland

Published June 10, 2015

Photos by
Ragna Guðmundsdóttir

Hundreds of sheep in Iceland have died off, and no one seems to know the exact cause. Research is currently underway to find the culprit.

RÚV reports that the deaths have hit especially hard in Borgarfjörður in west Iceland, Eyjafjörður in the north, and across east Iceland. The wide area over which the deaths are occurring – as well as the alarming rate at which sheep are dying off – has many farmers worried. In some cases, half of entire flocks have been lost.

Svavar Halldórsson, chairperson of the National Association of Sheep Farmers, told reporters that he believes disease may be to blame. As such, he and other farmers have begun taking blood samples from ill sheep to be analyzed by the National Veterinary Authority.

More specifically, MBL reports that bad hay may be killing the sheep.

Svavar has no exact figures on how many sheep have fallen so far, but told reporters that the deaths have “been a heavy weight on our farmers, to miss so many animals.”

Support The Reykjavík Grapevine!
Book your day tours in Iceland right here!

Go travel with Grapevine tried and recommended tours by Grapevine. Fund Grapevine journalism by booking with us.

Show Me More!