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Govt takes measures to check spread of FMD to wildlife


Thiruvananthapuram: With the outbreak of Foot-and-Mouth Disease (FMD) causing heavy casualty of cattle population, Kerala Forest Department has issued a set of guidelines to check its spread among wildlife.

The FMD HAS claimed lives of about 2,800 heads of cattle besides affecting 33,000 bovines in the state in the last couple of months.

A circular issued by the Chief Wildlife Warden has asked all Divisional Forest Officers to take effective measures to contain the disease and save wild animals living in the state forests, spread over 11309.50 sq kilometres.

The trans-boundary movement of cattle through check-posts will be monitored and steps taken to identify those who are not vaccinated in and around the protected area and vaccinate them.

"As of now, no case of FMD or death due to the disease has been reported from any forest division or animal shelters under the department. But, we have taken a series of precautionary measures to check its spread among wild stock," Principal Chief Conservator of Forest and Chief Wildlife Warden V Gopinath said.

The circular has asked the divisional authorities to report mortality of wild animals as soon as the sighting of carcass and send a weekly report of mortality to respective wildlife wardens.

Any increase in mortality of herbivores also should be reported.

Checking of tourists should be regulated or stopped till the outbreak is over. As far as possible, visitors will be asked to dip their feet and wash the wheels of vehicles with sodium carbonate solution at every entry point of tourists, it said.


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