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Acute Fasioliasis in Flocks of District Srinagar

Dr. Syed Moin ul haq

The susceptibility to the diseases is always higher in exotic or improved breeds than the native or local ones, and ever since the exotic blood was introduced in the sheep flocks of J&K, prevalence of the diseases also increased. The department of sheep husbandry responded well and a very good mechanism of flock health care with more emphasis on preventive medication and disease control was set in position. The department has been laying more stress on control of parasitic diseases and more than half  of the budget allotted for drugs and therapeutic agents is utilized on anthelminthic drenching and rightly so as these infestations not only sometimes cause heavy mortality among the flocks but also cause great economic losses due to reduction in production.

Srinagar district though more than eighty percent urbanised has a substantial and good quality crossbred sheep population reared in around 110 peripheral villages or suburbs. Topographically, the district can be divided grossly into three sheep rearing zones.

·         Hilly areas in east and south east of Srinagar like Dara, Faqirgujree, Brane, Nishat, Khimber, Khanmoh, Zewan and Zawoora etc.

·         Plain and marshy areas in the west and north west like Mujgund, Panzinara, Malroo, Laweypora, Palpora and Sangam etc

·         Plain and orchard areas of central Srinagar like Zakura, Gulabbagh, Batpora Saedpora, Telbal, Noubugh and Umerhair etc.

            In the marshy lands of west and northwest of the city, with about sixteen thousand sheep population, some big flocks of sheep are reared and during spring and autumn maintained by grazing on the banks of the river Jehlum. Acute Fascioliasis associated with Black Disease has been affecting and causing deaths in these flocks for many years.

TABLE SHOWING VILLAGEWISE MORTALITY DUE TO ACUTE FASIOLIASIS

            YEAR 2009

Name of the village

Total sheep population

No. of deaths recorded

Percentage mortality

Palpora

1650

18

1.0

Goripora

1200

25

2.0

Cochun

500

5

1.0

Bakshipora

350

3

0.85

Mujgund

700

8

1.1

Panzinara

600

7

1.1

Total

5000

66

1.32

YEAR 2010

Name of the village

Total sheep population

No. of deaths recorded

Percentage mortality

Guzarbal

400

8

2.0

Shunglipora

1800

30

1.6

Palpora

1800

7

0.3

Goripora

1700

34

2.0

Chochun

575

18

3.1

Bakshipora

420

4

0.9

Sangam, Bajiwudri

1750

21

1.2

Malroo

850

8

0.9

Total

9295

130

1.3

 

YEAR 2011

       

Name of the village

Total sheep population

No. of deaths recorded

Percentage mortality

Chochun

530

2

0.3

Sangam

730

8

1.0

Bajiwudri

1000

2

0.2

Total

2250

12

0.5

 

 

 

Acute fascioliasis is caused by Fasciola hepatica which has liver as its site of predilection. The intermediate stage involves snails. The two primary requirements for establishment of the liverflukes are snails and an environment that suits fluke eggs, the snails and the larval flukes such as slow moving streams with marshy banks, irrigation channels and seepages. The affected areas in Srinagar present optimal conditions and in the months of late autumn, November and December, mortality was recorded during the years in question. Deaths in almost all the cases were peracute. Post mortem examination conducted in most of the cases by experts of Disease Investigation Laboratory revealed liver damage caused by migrating young flukes and severe haemorrhage with blood in abdomen. The condition was associated in almost in all cases with Black disease as the damage by young flukes provides suitable environment for germination of spores of Clostridium novyi type B.

Liver of ram showing acute fascioliasis and juandice

Liver of an ewe showing damage due to acute fascioliasis

Liver damage due to Black Disease associated with

                                                                                                     

Control measures adopted:

The department being sensitive to the losses that occurred during the previous year’s took appropriate measures during 2011 and the flocks in the risk areas were given strategic drenching of oxyclozanide and closantal during the months of September and October and then Triclabandazole @ 10mg/kg body wt. every three weeks during November and December in the high risk villages where deaths due to the disease had previously occurred. Flocks in the area were also given MCC vaccine. Farmers were also sensitised and advised to improve the plan of nutrition during winter months and both morbidity and mortality drastically reduced during the season.

 


ASSESSMENT OF GROWTH IN PURCHASED RAMS OF DISTRICT SRINAGAR

                                                                                                     Dr. Andleeb Rafiq   

                                                                                                      Technical Officer

District Sheep Husbandry Office, Srinagar

 

District Srinagar, which is spread over an area of 293 sq. kms is about 80% urbanized with very little agriculture and allied activities. Out of a total of 136 villages in the peripheries, sheep rearing is practiced in about 110 villages with farmers having average holding of 30-40 sheep. Sheep have multi-faceted utility including meat, wool, skin, manure, and to some extent milk & transport and thus helps it to play an important role in the agrarian economy. District Srinagar has an important history as the cross breeding programme in the state has started from the Zakura area of Srinagar and this area has always been rich in sheep farming and some prominent sheep farmers have been from this area. The cross breed sheep population in the district is almost 100% percent and the Departmental activities including further upgradation of the flocks in terms of mutton and wool growth are continuing. Since the flocks in Srinagar are quite superior in terms of productivity than the rams from the Departmental farms, the Department as its one of the most important programmes provides the flocks with good quality rams for genetic improvement and up gradation of the flocks. The Department has in absence of any foreign importation of rams in the recent past and least likely to be in near future, developed a policy of introducing ‘elite’ or the best amongst the best Rams obtained from the local gene pool into the flocks. These elite rams with phenotypic characteristics of quick growth without compromising on the wool quality are identified, selected and purchased from local sheep farmers on encouraging and good remunerative prices and kept under local conditions with the flocks.

In District Srinagar, the purchase and use of such rams started during December, 2009 when 12 rams were purchased upto March, 2010 under Centrally Sponsored scheme RKVY. Out of the 12 Rams, 8 were Milk tooth (age group of 11-14 months) and 4 Ram were two teeth (age group of 18-21 months).

The body weight statistics of the Rams at the time of purchase was:

Mean body weight of MT Rams                =40.8 kgs

Maximum body weight                                =49 kgs

Minimum body weight                                 =36 kgs

 

Mean body weight of 2T Rams                 =46.66 kgs

Maximum body weight                                =49 kgs

Minimum body weight                                 =43 Kgs

 

During the month of November 2010, 26 more rams were purchased under another Centrally Sponsored Scheme, SWIS and were put in the field for breeding. 12 rams purchased were milk tooth (MT) and rest 14 rams were two teeth (2T), age group of 18-22 months.

The body weight statistics of the Rams at the time of purchase:

Mean body weight of 12 MT Rams                      = 36.8 kgs

Maximum body weight                                            = 43 kgs

Minimum body weight                                             = 33 kgs

 

Mean body weight of 14 2T Rams                       = 47.90 kgs

Maximum body weight                                            = 64 kgs

Minimum body weight                                             = 41 kgs

 

Furthermore, during the month of October 2011, 15 more rams were purchased under RKVY and 5 rams under SWIS and again put in the field for the purpose of breeding. 6 rams purchased were MT, 5 rams were 2T, and out of the remaining 4 rams, 2 were 4T and 1 ram was 6T.

The body weight statistics of the Rams at the time of purchase:

Mean body weight of 6 MT Rams                                    = 55.25 kgs

Maximum body weight                                            = 67 kgs

Minimum body weight                                             = 40 kgs

 

Mean body weight of 14 2T Rams                       = 60 kgs

Maximum body weight                                            = 63 kgs

Minimum body weight                                             = 58 kgs

 

In September 2012, 9 rams were purchased again under RKVY; out of which 1 ram was MT and rest 8 rams were 2T.

The body weight statistics of the Rams at the time of purchase:

Body weight of one MT Ram                                 = 50 kgs

 

Mean body weight of 8 2T Rams                         = 51.75 kgs

Maximum body weight                                            = 57 kgs

Minimum body weight                                             = 50 kgs

           

All the purchased animals were kept with the local flocks in field conditions doing unrestricted breeding, shifted to high land pastures mostly in the Sonamarg sector during summer months and adjusted with breeders during winter months of 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2011-12. The farmers during winter months feed the livestock with fodder mostly straws and hay, tree toppings and concentrates mostly wheat bran and rice bran in very little quantities.

The body weight (in kgs) of all these rams was recorded in the following intervals for the assessment of growth and the statistics as under:

OBSERVATIONS ON GROWTH OF RAMS FOR A PERIOD 36 MONTHS

S. No

Age group at the time of purchase

Mean B Wt. at the time of purchase

Max. B wt.

Min. B wt.

Mean B wt. after 3 years

Max. B wt.

Min. B wt.

GAIN

1

MT

40.8

49

36

49

55

44

+8.2 kgs

2

2T

46.66

49

43

48

50

47

+1.34  kgs

OBSERVATIONS ON GROWTH OF RAMS FOR A PERIOD 24 MONTHS

 

S. No

Age group at the time of purchase

Mean B Wt. at the time of purchase

Max. B wt.

Min. B wt.

Mean B wt. after 3 years

Max. B wt.

Min. B wt.

GAIN

1

MT

38.13

49

33

45.20

51

42

+7.07 kgs

2

2T

47.64

64

41

49.92

70

43

+2.28 kgs

OBSERVATIONS OF GROWTH OF RAMS FOR A PERIOD OF 12 MONTHS

S. No

Age group at the time of purchase

Mean B Wt. at the time of purchase

Max. B wt.

Min. B wt.

Mean B wt. after 3 years

Max. B wt.

Min. B wt.

GAIN

1

MT

41.73

67

33

42.9

53

35

+1.17 kgs

2

2T

49.82

64

41

48.47

55

44

-1.35 kgs

 

OVERALL OBSERVATIONS

The data reveals that the overall body weight has shown an increasing trend in both the categories of rams i.e. rams purchased as milk tooth as well as those purchased as two teeth. The body weight recording in Milk tooth rams for a period of 36 months has shown an overall gain of +8.2 kgs and with substantial increase of 6 kgs in maximum body weight and a 8 kgs gain in the minimum body weight. Similarly, recordings of 23-24 months period have shown an overall gain of +7.07 kgs in the body weight in Milk tooth rams with maximum body weight showing a gain of 2 kgs and the minimum body weight showing an increase of 6 kgs, indicating a satisfactory growth pattern of these rams. In case of 11-12 months recording of body weight, there was a growth of 1.17 kgs in Milk tooth rams with a negative gain in the maximum body weight and an increase of 2 kgs in the minimum body weight.

In case of 2T rams, over the period of 36 months, there has been a growth of 1.34 kgs with maximum body weight showing an increase of 1 kg and minimum body weight showing an increase of 4 kgs in weight. In a period of 23-24 months, a growth of 2.28 kgs was recorded with a gain of 6 kgs in maximum body weight and a gain of 2 kgs in the minimum body weight. However, in 11-12 month period, there was a negative growth of 1.35 kgs with a decrease of 9 kgs in the maximum body weight and an increase of 3 kgs in the minimum body weight. The decreases could possibly be attributed to breeding stress as these mature rams were continuously in the flocks during breeding season.

PERIOD

MILK TOOTH

TWO TEETH

 

 Gain in avg. b. wt.

Gain in avg. b. wt.

36 Months

+ 8.2 kgs

+1.34 kgs

24 Months

+ 7.07 kgs

+2.28 kgs

12 Months

+ 1.17 kgs

-1.35 kgs

 

Further, the raw data also revealed that the mortality was more in two teeth rams as compared to the milk tooth rams.

CONCLUSION:

It appears from the study that the animals purchased as MT have grown better during 1st, 2nd and the 3rd year of their purchase as compared to those purchased as 2T during these years. It also appears from the study that animals purchased with less body weight have shown more increase in body weight during the 1st, 2nd and the 3rd year of their purchase probably due to reason that heavier rams might have undergone stress due to more breeding.                                                                                                                                                                       

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