A Thai zoo fumigated its animal enclosures today (June 1) after an outbreak of ‘lumpy skin disease’ was discovered. The prevention program was done following reports that the illness had been found in 20 provinces including 23 districts in Khon Kaen province, northeastern Thailand. Footage shows staff wearing protective gears carrying machines and blowing smokes of disinfectant around enclosures in Khon Kaen zoo. Zoo official Narongwit Chot Choi said they immediately carried out the measures to prevent the spread of the disease especially to their Watusi cows which were at higher risk. He said: ‘We followed the measures to save our animals from the disease. We have Watusi cows which were at higher risk of being infected.’ Wachirawit Somsa, veterinarian and head of the Department of Animal Care of Khon Kaen zoo, said: ‘The zoo is prone to the disease. We are now taking care of all animals especially Watusi cows living at the African animal exhibition zone. ‘We will spray germicides around the animal exhibition stage and animal quarantine stations twice a week. ‘Nylon nets were also installed to prevent insect carriers of the disease such as mosquitoes, flies, horseflies, ticks, fleas, and gnats which are the common hosts.’ Thai government officials have started launching information drives among locals and farmers so they could prepare as well. Agriculture official Prapat Potasuthon said: ‘All related agencies including Khon Kaen provincial livestock officers, officers of animal quarantine station and others have meeting with us to deal with the situation.’ Cases of lumpy skin disease were first found in Don Daeng village in Nakhon Phanom province on March and reported to the World Organisation for Animal Health on April. Lumpy skin disease is a viral disease of cattle that is spread by biting insects. It is closely related to the pox viruses of sheep and goats which causes nodular skin lesions or ‘lumps’ on the animal’s body.
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