BACOLOD CITY — The Provincial Veterinary Office (PVO) of Negros Occidental has started monitoring the effects of extreme heat to livestock and poultry, following reports of damage to rice farms in the southern part of the province.
Dr. Ryan Janoya, head of PVO Animal Health and Meat Inspection Services Division, said as of Tuesday, their field monitoring did not indicate significant losses, so far among livestock and poultry farms.
“We have been anticipating a period of extreme heat due to climate change every year. Losses before were not that huge as local raisers had prepared and mitigating measures were also in place,” he said.
Janoya added that the PVO, through the district veterinarians and livestock inspectors, continuously reminds backyard raisers to implement measures to lessen the possible adverse effects of the dry weather to animals.
Considered most vulnerable to extreme heat among livestock are swine and broiler for poultry.
A swine has no sweat glands thus the animal has difficulty regulating its body temperature and needs to be bathed frequently.
Broiler is fast-growing and has fast metabolism, but weak in coping with heat regulation.
Janoya said they have been advising raisers to avoid putting their animals in areas with high temperature like those exposed to sunlight.
“It’s better to place animals in shaded areas like under the trees, and provide them sufficient amount of water,” he added.
Janoya said raisers should also provide additional supplements to animals like multivitamins and electrolytes so that they would become resistant to diseases.
With the heat associated with El Niño projected to intensify this month, the PVO has briefed veterinarians in different districts and local government units to immediately report animal deaths caused by extreme heat.
“Proper reporting is essential as it enables the PVO to immediately assess the situation and provide technical assistance, if necessary,” Janoya said.
The Office of the Provincial Agriculturist is also validating reports of the damage caused by extreme heat to some rice farms in the southern Negros town of Cauayan. (PNA)