Deal with carcasses fast to cut risk

23 March 2001

Deal with carcasses fast to cut risk

PRODUCERS who usually rely on knackermen or hunt kennels to dispose of fallen stock at lambing, should not allow carcasses to illegally build up during movement restrictions.

Deep burial and burning carcasses in the open should be considered as viable alternatives.

ADAS livestock consultant, David Morris, urges producers to deal with carcasses quickly and effectively to minimise risks of spreading disease. "When using deep burial, it is essential that pits are covered at the end of each day and a new pit dug the following day.

"Pits that are back-filled as they become full or those left open until the end of lambing, will encourage scavengers and diseases may spread," he says.

According to regulations, burial pits should not be placed within 250m (820ft) of water supplies for human consumption, within 30m (98ft) of springs and water courses or within 10m (32ft) of field drains, says Mr Morris. In addition, 1m (3.2ft) of sub-soil must be below the pit and 1m of top-soil must cover carcasses.

When deep burial is unworkable, burning carcasses on a daily basis in the open is a secondary option, says Mr Morris. "Burning must be done effectively to control disease spread and for safety, fires should not be made near buildings, hedges or residential areas." &#42

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