2,000 pigs die of respiratory syndrome in Aizawl

Aizawl, 8 May (PTI):Over 2,000 pigs have died in the Mizoram-Myanmar border Champhai town and surrounding villages due to Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome (PRRS), Champhai Area Vawkvulh Association (CAVA) or Champhai area Pig Rearers’ Association president K. Zamlova has said.

Zamlova told PTI over phone from Champhai that the PRRS outbreak, which started more than a month back, continued unabated as more pigs were dying everyday while fresh infections causing illness continued in the affected area covering 19 village councils in Champhai town and nearby villages.

There was no official figure yet on the PRRS toll and Champhai District Veterinary Officer Dr Lalchungnunga Pudaite said they depend on the local Young Mizo Association (YMA) branches, which had been collecting data on the deaths and infections.

Dr. Pudaite claimed the district veterinary officials acted fast, but there were some constraints and waste of time in determination of the disease as samples of the dead pigs were sent to laboratories and the results routed through the Directorate of the Animal Husbandry and Veterinary.

Shortage of antibiotics to combat the outbreak was the main hurdle, he said, adding PRRS vaccination was yet to be invented.

YMA’s Champhai sub-headquarter volunteers dug trenches with excavators near the town to use them as temporary burial grounds for the dead pigs to prevent spread of the disease.

At least 3,000 pigs died in Mizoram in 2013 due to the outbreak of PRRS in the State which affected six of the eight districts during March to April that year, forcing the State government to prohibit import of pigs and piglets from Myanmar.

The opposition Mizo National Front accused the government of importing piglets from Myanmar in 2014, knowing that the disease was perpetually prevalent in that country and favouritism was involved in the purchase of piglets from Myanmar.

Zamlova said F. Lalrithanga of Venglai locality in Champhai lost 55 pigs due to the PRRS followed by Malsawma of Zotlang near Champhai who lost 43 pigs.
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