July 19, 2024

Benguet is monitoring the reported case of Newscastle disease (ND) that is endemic to poultry, which was recently recorded in a farm in Naguey, Atok, according to Provincial Veterinarian Chief Purita Lesing.

Lesing said their office has already conducted vaccination and raised the biosecurity measures to the affected farm, as well as neighboring poultry farms in the area.

Investigation is ongoing in partnership with the Department of Agriculture-Cordillera as to where the disease might have come from and to prevent it from further spread. 

Most of the poultry farms in Benguet are backyard farming.

Lesing has reminded poultry raisers to report any possible cases of ND to their respective Municipal Veterinary Office or Municipal Agricultural Office for monitoring of their farms.

ND is an infection of domestic poultry and other bird species with the virulent Newcastle disease virus.

The following signs and symptoms are observed with infected birds such as: loss of appetite, coughing, gasping, nasal discharge, watery eyes, bright green diarrhea and nervous signs such as paralysis and convulsions, combs and wattles may look swollen that are enlarged and discolored (purple or blue), reduced egg production and the few eggs that are produced may be soft shelled and malformed.

ND is a minor zoonosis (disease of animals that can also infect humans) and can cause conjunctivitis in humans, but the condition is generally very mild and self-limiting according to the World Organization of Animal Health.

Meanwhile, the Bureau of Animal Industry, in its public advisory, stated it is actively addressing reported cases of Q fever.

BAI said it is taking measures to contain the disease and some 94 infected goats have been depopulated while tracing of potentially infected animals are ongoing to prevent its spread.

Last week, the BAI confirmed that the country has recorded its first case of Q fever in imported goats from the United States. 

Q fever is a zoonotic disease caused by the Coxiella burnetii bacteria, which is transmissible to humans through contact with infected animals or their excreta, or body and birthing fluids.

The BAI has assured the public it is conducting extensive surveillance in the affected areas and that no major outbreak was recorded. – Ofelia C. Empian