African swine fever: Know about the viral disease being reported in Kerala

Reported By:DNA Web Team| Edited By: DNA Web Team |Source: DNA Web Desk |Updated: Oct 29, 2022, 09:03 AM IST

African swine fever: Know about the viral disease being reported in Kerala (file photo)

African swine fever has been reported again in Kerala. This time in a private farm at Meenachil Panchayat in Kottayam district. The African swine fever was first reported from some farms in Wayanad and Kannur districts a few months ago.

Kottayam district collector Dr P K Jayasree said precautionary measures have been taken to prevent the spread of the disease in the district. As many as 48 pigs have been culled and burried so far, an official said.

The collector, who is also the chairperson of the district disaster management authority, has directed the animal husbandry officials to cull and burry the pigs in the farm where the disease has been confirmed. Earlier, the virus was limited to African countries and parts of Europe, South America, and the Caribbean. 

What is African Swine Flu?

African swine fever (ASF) is a highly contagious viral disease of domestic and wild pigs. Its mortality rate can reach 100 percent. It does not affect humans, but it has devastating effects on pig populations and the farming economy. There is currently no effective vaccine against ASF.

The practice of feeding uncooked food waste (that has not been appropriately heat treated) to pigs can also result in transmission of the virus if the food waste being fed to pigs contains contaminated pork products.

African swine fever symptoms

High fever, decreased appetite and weakness, red, blotchy skin or skin lesions, diarrhoea and vomiting, coughing, and difficulty in breathing.

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Measures including closing down of the shops selling pork meat in the affected area and stopping the transportation of pigs, pork meat and fodder from there to other areas have also been taken, the district authorities said. 

 “An area of one kilometer around the pig farm where the disease has been confirmed has been declared as an infected area and a radius of ten kilometers as a disease surveillance zone,” the district collector is quoted as saying in a government release in Kottayam.

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