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Spread of FMD a cause for concern

Special Correspondent
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10 head of cattle die in upper Kuttanad; many cases reported from Thrissur

Failing health:A cow afflicted with foot-and-mouth disease at Peringara, a village in the upper Kuttanad region.– Photo: Leju Kamal
Failing health:A cow afflicted with foot-and-mouth disease at Peringara, a village in the upper Kuttanad region.– Photo: Leju Kamal

Foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) is spreading fast in the upper Kuttanad region of the district.

Ten head of cattle died of the viral disease on Wednesday while 150 were reported to be afflicted with the disease.

According to George Varghese, District Public Relations Officer of the Animal Husbandry Department, Peringara is the worst affected area in the district.

Dr. Varghese said the number of FMD-afflicted cattle in Peringara was on the rise and 98 cases were reported till Wednesday afternoon. Two calves died of the disease in the village.

Cattle deaths were reported from 17 panchayats in the district in the past 25 days. The deaths were reported from Mannady, Eraviperoor, Niranom, Puramattom and Thiruvalla.

The department had taken all steps to prevent the disease from spreading to more areas, he said.

The scenario in Peringara is different from that of any other part of the district. The first case of FMD was reported from there hardly 10 days ago. However, the disease began to spread fast in the village, afflicting as many as 96 head of cattle in the past one week.

Dr. Varghese said absence of natural barriers like hills, coupled with the waterlogging had led to the fast spreading of the disease. The morbidity pattern of the disease was as high as 80 per cent.

In Thrissur

Staff Reporter writes from Thrissur: The spread of the disease in the district has left the Animal Husbandry Department a worried lot. The disease has been reported from various areas in the district, including Tholoor, Edakalathur, Punnayurkulam, Arangotukara, Varavoor, Perumbadappu, Vadakkekkad and Etumanoor. A crisis management team headed by the chief veterinary officer is leading the treatment and preventive drive.

Though farmers had been warned about the disease well in advance, many were reluctant to take preventive measures, said veterinary expert P.B. Giridas.

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