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Diseases kill more than 200 animals

By Mercy Kahenda | Published Fri, August 3rd 2018 at 00:00, Updated August 2nd 2018 at 21:39 GMT +3

Goats from north Eastern heaped at Tononoka grounds in Mombasa County on Wednesday.030th August,2017. [Maarufu Mohamed,Standard]

More than 200 livestock have been killed following an outbreak of blue tank disease in Kiserian.

Baringo South veterinary officer Julius Cheruiyot says the outbreak could be attributed to recent cases of flooding. 

Blue tank disease is also one of the most common and persistent parasitic conditions in aquariums. 

Its symptoms include coughing, fever, teary eyes and running nose.

Dr Cheruiyot said samples taken to the laboratory had shown the livestock could also be suffering from Rift Valley fever.

This was also strengthened by some of the symptoms the animals exhibited, including abortion.

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Cheruiyot, however, said they were carrying out more tests to confirm presence of Rift Valley fever.

“Abortions reported in the livestock have raised alarm. Samples tested have also indicated traces of Rift Valley fever,” said Cheruiyot. 

Local Chief George Kaseiya said they suspected the animals were also suffering from Rift Valley fever.

Sheep and goats affected

He said the disease that had hit the region for the past one and half months, had mainly affected sheep and goats. 

Other symptoms the livestock were showing included inflammation of the skin, continuous discharge of mucous, swelling of the belly, diarrhoea and teary eyes.

"Many residents have been affected, as hundreds of sheep and goats die. This is worrying, and we need the Ministry of Agriculture to urgently intervene to avoid more losses," said Kaseiya.

He added: “I am also a victim. My four goats died last week even after vaccination.” 

Samuel Lengochiel, another farmer, said he lost 20 sheep in two weeks.

"I reported to the local veterinary officer when I noticed the animals were dormant. They were treated, but did not recover," said Mr Lengochiel.

Five of the sheep he lost aborted before they died.

"I vaccinated the rest of the animals, but there has been no change," said Lengochiel.

He said death of his livestock had rendered him poor. "I have been selling them to provide for my family, including paying school fees."

Joseph Barkitore lost six sheep and two goats.  

Mr Barkitore said some of his livestock had blood in their urine. “This is strange, it has never happened before," he said. 

Meanwhile, Dr Cheruiyot said the county government had dispatched veterinary officers to affected areas.

He said the programme would help establish blue tank and Rift Valley fever cases.

At least 70,000 animals are targeted. Treatment will be free of charge, according to Cheruiyot.


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