MANILA – Around 123 pigs owned by 48 farmers were humanely culled and properly disposed in Magpet, North Cotabato as the Department of Agriculture (DA) on Tuesday confirmed the detection of African swine fever (ASF) in the area.
According to the DA, the Provincial Veterinary Office (PVO) of North Cotabato received reports of swine mortalities in backyard farms in Barangay Ilian last June 29.
A disease investigation and surveillance and monitoring were conducted on July 1, by the PVO. Samples collected were submitted to the DA Regional Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory 12 (RADDL) for testing of ASF. The samples tested positive for ASF viral DNA.
Another disease investigation was conducted on July 8-9, in adjacent barangays. Upon further investigation, it was recorded that there were about 68 swine mortalities of unknown cause. Samples tested from Barangays Magkaalam and Ilian were positive for ASF.
The DA said an initial coordination meeting was held between the PVO, Municipal Agriculture Office (MAO), and concerned barangays for the control measures to mitigate the spread of ASF.
The PVO along with the LGU, Philippine National Police (PNP), PDRRM/MDRRM, DA Regional Field Office 12 (DARFO) and the BAI Regional Veterinary Quarantine Station conducted another coordination meeting on July 10 to immediately implement disease control measures such as the establishment of two animal quarantine checkpoints, movement restrictions of live pigs, pork and pork products and by-products, and disinfection of vehicles going in and out of the affected areas.
ASF awareness campaign was also conducted by the barangays affected.
Depopulation was conducted in Barangays Ilian (three sitios) and Magkaalam (one sitio) last July 12, following the modified 1-7-10 protocol where only the pigs within the 500 meters from the affected farm were subjected to mandatory culling.
Cleaning and disinfection immediately followed after the culling activities.
Meanwhile, the DA said health protocols for coronavirus disease (Covid-19) were observed by members of the depopulation and decontamination teams during the field operations.
The government veterinary authorities quickly responded to all the necessary procedures to contain the ASF case in North Cotabato.
The DA encourages swine stakeholders in the area to report any unusual swine mortalities to its municipal/city, provincial veterinary offices.
For reports or further inquiries on swine disease incidence, kindly call or text DA-BAI Hotline at 0995132933 or 09208543119. (PR)