The president of the College of Veterinarians of Teruel, Héctor Palatsi, warned this Monday that Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease (EHE), which is transmitted through mosquito bites, spread among the cattle herds of Aragón. They have already declared positive cases in three provinces, although they are few in Zaragoza and Huesca compared to those noticed in Teruel, where 20% of sheep farms in Jiloca are affected and the same is true of 40% of cattle facilities in Maestrazgo. In addition, 80 deer were found dead because of this in the Montes Universales Reserve in Albarracín.
Palatsí urged livestock farmers to start applying without further delay in measures to prevent this disease, which affects ruminants, domestic and wild, although in the case of the latter there is nothing to prevent the development of the pathology, except to remove the carcasses to eliminate this source of infection. Prophylaxis consists of put a mosquito repellent insecticide in the area and on the livestock. Sick animals should be given serum and corticosteroid drugs to help them overcome the disease.
“In Cantavieja the ranchers are already active, but in others, they are not,” lined up the representative of Teruel veterinarians, who called a press conference this Monday with the aim of spreading their message and “cale” among animal owners. “Prevention measures are easy and we must apply them if we do not want to lose them, because more outbreaks are seen every day“, he assured.
Palatsí expressed his concern about the economic viability of farms, in a sector that is not, he said, “for many pleasures.” “We have to do things well so that the disease doesn’t get worse,” stood up.
However, he admitted that the treatment against Hemorrhagic Disease “It’s expensive and the farmer pays for it”. In this sense, Palatsí described as “terrible” that the Health Defense Associations (ADS) would ask for help for the owners of farms.
Up to 8,000 euros were spent
Jesus Caveroa member of the ADS team of cattle and sheep veterinarians in the province, calculated that in an average farm of 50 animals in extensive livestock farming, the presence of EHE can cause problems for the producer . an additional cost of between 6,000 and 8,000 euros. The rancher is forced to collect from the field and take care and manage those sick animals, which increases labor expenditure and working hours. This adds to the losses due to the possible death of some specimens as well as the cost of medicines and repellent insecticides.
Cavero explained that sick animals must be isolated while asymptomatic animals can move around Spain but not travel to other countries.
The president of the College of Veterinarians of Teruel confirmed that, in his opinion, the right thing for the ADS and the veterinarians responsible for them to meet “quickly” to create an action protocol.
Héctor Paltasí estimates that the Administration should issue regulations that will oblige ranchers to act, something that ADS has already requested from the central government, considering that. The problem affects all of Spain. In his opinion, a protocol can also be developed by the Aragonese Government, because it has power over livestock and animal health.
For the spokesperson of Teruel veterinarians, however The mortality rate is low – between 4% and 8% of affected animals. the seriousness of the problem leads to recommending that organic farms too use insecticides to prevent disease progression.