Surveillance and preventive measures intensified in Thrissur’s Athirappilly as Anthrax has been confirmed in wild boars, which were found dead in the area.
Farmers were in panic as several wild boars were found dead in the last few days in areas near Vettilappara forests and in the palm estates in Athirappilly, where their cattle too graze. The Health Department, the Animal Husbandry Department, and the Forest Department have conducted investigation and samples were tested to confirm the anthrax infection.
Confirming the Anthrax outbreak in Athirappilly, Health Minister Veena Gorge said the department is taking immediate steps to prevent the spread of Anthrax.
According to the health department sources, as many as 13 people, who went to remove and bury the carcasses of the wild boars, have been added to the primary contact list and have been placed under medical surveillance. They have been given preventive treatment. The health department is trying to trace the source.
Meanwhile, Thrissur Collector Haritha V. Kumar said that there was no need for the people to panic about the situation.
“Preventive measures have been intensified. There is less chance to spread the disease from animals to human beings. So far cases of infection have not been reported in domestic animals or cattle,” she said.
A control room has been opened (0487-2424223). A high-level meeting of all departments concerned was conducted to discuss the emergency measures to be taken. Anthrax was reported in wild boars in the Athirappilly area in 2020 too. There were not many complications at that time, according to health department officials.
Anthrax is an infectious disease caused by bacteria known as Bacillus Anthracis, which is found in soil naturally. It commonly affects domestic and wild animals when they contact it. People can get sick if they come in close contact with the infected animals or contaminated animal products.
Vaccination drive has been started for all domestic animals in Athirappilly Panchayat. People have been asked to report the authorities if they notice animals die en masse. They were alerted to avoid going near dead animals and to not use meat or milk of the Anthrax-infected animals.