Published Date: 2018-12-08 16:02:27
Subject: PRO/AH> Foot & mouth disease - India (03): (AR) mithun
Archive Number: 20181208.6194263
FOOT AND MOUTH DISEASE - INDIA (03): (ARUNACHAL PRADESH) MITHUN
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Date: Sat 8 Dec 2018
Source: The Arunachal Times [edited]
The Department of Animal Husbandry, Veterinary and Dairy Development (AHV&DD) on Fri [7 Dec 2018] reported that 26 mithuns have died of foot and mouth disease (FMD) in Papum Pare district since June . Stating that this FMD outbreak in Papum Pare is unprecedented, AHV&DD Director Dr. ND Minto in a release said 2957 animals have been either treated or vaccinated in the district so far.
A total of 3 mithuns have died in Balijan, 5 in Tarasso, 12 in Sangdupota and 6 in Toru circles, the release said. No FMD death has so far been reported from Sagalee, Kakoi, Doimukh and Itanagar.
"The department is making all-out efforts to contain the disease outbreak. Veterinary camps were organized wherever there was report of FMD," Dr. Minto said. The director also said veterinary officers and field personnel equipped with medicines were mobilized since FMD was 1st reported on 25 Jun 2018 from the Tapioso area of Sangdupota circle.
"FMD is basically a viral disease and its symptoms can be seen as lesions in FMD and mouth areas in cloven-footed animals. The disease can easily be treated at an early stage. Most deaths occur due to late reporting," Dr. Minto said [see comment below].
The department sought cooperation from the public at the time of biannual vaccination, which is carried out twice every year (pre-monsoon and post-monsoon), and urged them to report to the nearest veterinary dispensary or veterinary aid centre if any animal gets sick or is found infected with FMD virus, in order to contain the disease before it spreads to other animals.
ProMED-mail Rapporteur Kunihiko Iizuka
[A recent study (see reference below), carried out to identify the types of FMD virus circulating in the mithun population of northeastern India, included the following background information about the mithun:
"[Northeast] India is a significant biological niche inhabited by many indigenous species. Mithun (_Bos frontalis_) 'cattle of mountain' are an indigenous species to this region and are an integral part of the socio-economic and cultural life of the tribal population of this region, particularly Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh. The mithun symbolizes prosperity and superiority in the society, where the animal is killed in various socio-cultural rituals and is given during marriage as a gift. FMD is considered a dreaded disease in mithun. The incidence of the disease is found to be higher in young animals compared with adults. The signs and symptoms in affected mithun are similar to those in cattle, including the post-mortem lesions, such as myocardial haemorrhages and petechial haemorrhages on the kidney. FMD stands as a barrier to consideration of mithun as an economic beef animal reared under a semi-intensive system and adoption of a controlled breeding programme for healthy propagation of this species in the region."
The above media report from Arunachal Pradesh, northeast India, addressing an FMD outbreak which, reportedly, had started about 6 months earlier, probably reflects the authorities' effort to seek cooperation of the farmers in the application of the semi-annual vaccinations rather than reflecting an acute issue.
FMD is endemic in India; regularly performed mass vaccination of susceptible species and the use of efficacious matching vaccines are essential to reduce losses and to control the spread of FMD within and beyond the Indian subcontinent. - Mod.AS
Reference: Borah B, Deka P, Sharma K, et al. Isolation, identification and retrospective study of foot-and mouth disease virus from affected mithun (_Bos frontalis_) in north-eastern India. Transbound Emerg Dis 2018;65:e63-e69 https://doi.org/10.1111/tbed.12678.
Arunachal Pradesh State, India: http://healthmap.org/promed/p/298]