Bulk tank milk samples from 5,024 dairy herds in Lower Austria were tested by ELISA for antibodies to bovine virus diarrhoea virus (BVDV). Approximately 54 per cent of the herds had a low level of bulk tank antibody unsuspected of recent infection with BVDV. In 512 herds, which had a high level of bulk tank antibody suggestive of recent infection with BVDV, milk samples from 5-10 primiparous cows, respectively were tested by ELISA for antibodies to BVDV. In 287 (56.1%) of these 512 herds only antibody-negative primiparous cows were detected. In 759 herds blood samples from 8-10 young stock, respectively were tested by ELISA for antibodies to BVDV. The majority of the tested animals was seronegative in 583 (76.8%) herds. The whole stock from 154 herds was tested for persistent BVDV infections. From 51 herds in all 149 cattle persistently infected with BVDV were detected. Because of the low prevalence of BVDV infections it seems possible to control BVDV without vaccination in Lower Austrian dairy farms.