LAOAG CITY – Another town in Ilocos Norte has been added to the red zone map of African swine fever (ASF) after two barangays in Banna town were found to have been infected with the highly contagious viral disease.
Municipal agriculturist Alan Palaspas confirmed this in a radio interview on Thursday as he reported there are 220 hogs in Barangay Crispina and 424 in Barangay Valdez are needed to be culled to arrest further spread of ASF to nearby villages and towns.
As of this posting, the Municipal Agriculture Office and the Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office are preparing for the animal burial site, which should be far from residential areas.
The municipal agriculturist theorized the water from the irrigation canal where some backyard hog raisers get their water supply may have triggered the spread of the virus or infected meat may have probably entered the municipality amidst stern warning from the local government prohibiting the entry of pig products from other towns and provinces.
“Because of this, we continue to intensify our monitoring and surveillance operations to prevent disease transmission,” he added.
Of the 21 towns and two cities of Ilocos Norte, at least seven municipalities, mostly located near upstream are already in the red map or infected zones.
These are the towns of Solsona where the index case was recorded, followed by its neighboring towns of Dingras, Marcos, Nueva Era, Carasi, Vintar and Banna.
In the meantime, the Provincial Veterinary Office is urging hog raisers to engage in other livestock production to mitigate their loss. (PNA)