African Swine Fever: Culling of infected pigs to begin in Wayanad from Sunday

Representative Image | Photo: Mathrubhumi

Wayanad: The district authority here has confirmed that the culling of African Swine Fever infected pigs will commence from Sunday.

Mananthavady sub-collector R Sreelakshmi informed that farm owners have given their consent to cull the pigs. She added that the district administration will speed up the procedures to grant compensation to the farm owners.

“ Wayanad reported the first African Swine Fever case in South India. An expert team has visited the farm owner at Thavinhal and held talks with him. The farm owner has agreed to cooperate with the culling of pigs. The compensation amount will be given to the farm owners as equivalent to the price of the pig meat per quantity. The amount will be distributed without delay,” said the sub-collector.

Culling of pigs is initiated as per the protocol followed at the national level. The rapid response team of the animal husbandry department is in charge of the mission. The pigs will be electrocuted to death for avoiding blood spilling. The culled pigs will be buried on the premises of the farm itself.

Mananthavady sub-collector is in charge of the African Swine fever preventive measures. At present, only the pigs which are found to be infected with African Swine Fever will be killed.

Earlier, the government planned to cull over 300 pigs in the farms. But one of the farmers, where some pigs tested positive for the disease, claimed that the allegedly infected animals appear hale and hearty for the last several days and therefore, authorities should wait for a few more days before going ahead with the culling of the animals.

Kerala Minister for Animal Husbandry J Chinchu Rani on Friday confirmed the infection in the state and directed the pig farms to strictly implement the biosecurity and waste disposal mechanism as part of the swine fever action plan.

African swine fever has been reported from two farms in the Mananthavady region of Kerala's Wayanad district.

The disease was confirmed among pigs of the two farms after the samples were tested at the National Institute of High-Security Animal Diseases in Bhopal.

Pursuant to the test results, the state government had extended the ban on the inter-state sale and transportation of pigs and pork-related products.

Kerala had earlier this month tightened bio-security measures following an alert from the Centre that African swine fever had been reported in Bihar and a few northeastern states.

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), African swine fever is a highly contagious and fatal viral disease in domestic pigs.

It was first detected in Kenya, East Africa, in 1921 as a disease that killed settlers' pigs. Contact with warthogs was proven to be an important factor in the transmission of the virus.

(with inputs from PTI)

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