Foot & Mouth disease

Foot & Mouth disease: Vaccination to be completed by Jan 15

Dakshina Kannada district has 2,50,569 cows, 1,832 buffaloes

Representative image.

The Department of Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Services, in association with Dakshina Kannada Co-operative Milk Producers Union Limited (DKMUL), has commenced the vaccination against foot and mouth disease (FMD) in cattle and the drive will be completed by January 15.

The district has 2,50,569 cows and 1,832 buffaloes. The vaccination is taken up under the National Animal Disease Control Programme (NADCP) which aims to control the disease before 2025 and to completely eradicate it by 2030, thereby achieving self-sufficiency in the production of milk and increasing the revenue of farmers.

Department of Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Services Deputy Director Dr Prasanna Kumar said that the vaccination drive had commenced on December 17 and about 20% of the cattle have been vaccinated so far.

“We are hopeful of completing the vaccination within the stipulated period. Vaccination is the only solution to the foot and mouth disease in cattle,” he informed DH.

As many as 38 teams have been constituted for the vaccination drive. The staff from DKMUL and the animal husbandry department will visit the households to vaccinate the cattle. Each team is provided with a vehicle as well, he said.

“We have made arrangements to inform the villagers about the vaccination drive in a particular village on the previous day itself so that the farmers can tie the cattle at home for the vaccination,” he added.

The vaccination for cattle is conducted once in six months under the NADCP. The cattle were vaccinated last December.

Owing to the Covid-19 pandemic, the vaccination drive was not taken up in June.

However, owing to the delay in vaccination, foot and mouth disease were reported in a few pockets in the villages.

As and when the disease was reported, the department had taken up a ring vaccination drive in the surroundings of the affected village.

UID tag

Along with vaccination, the process of tagging the cattle with a 12 digit unique identification (UID) number has also been taken up in the district.

Though 90% of the cattle have received UID tags, the newborn calf and those cattle that were procured to the district from outside have to be tagged with a UID number.

The tag helps to know the vaccination status of the cattle, details of the owner, artificial insemination details. In fact, the tag had helped the police to identify the owner of the cattle that were traced in a particular case a few months ago, said Dr Prasanna Kumar.

Further, he said that the drive for the Kisan credit card to avail loans for the rearing of cattle, poultry, sheep and pig will continue till February 15. The applications will be sent to the banks after scrutiny. Already, 500 farmers have applied for the same.

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