Swine flu prompts culling of 40 pigs in central Transylvania

Almost forty mangalica pigs were destroyed in Szeklerland on a farm in Kovászna/Covasna County after numerous animals died due to being infected with African swine fever (ASF), a fatal pig disease – reported the Agerpres news agency.

According to the head of the Kovászna County Veterinary Hygiene and Food Safety Directorate (DSVSA), Sándor Sikó Barabási, laboratory tests were conducted after seven pigs perished on a farm near Barót/Baraolt. The tests detected the African swine fever virus in the dead animals. In order to prevent the disease from spreading, another 37 mangalica pigs had to be killed.

Hungarian breed of domestic pig
Mangalica (pronounce: Mangalitza) is a Hungarian breed of domestic pig which is the only domestic pig in the world today that grows a thick, woolly coat similar to that of a sheep. (Photo: agraragazat.hu)

The DSVSA head stated that the infected animals had been raised for more than a year on the same farm and had been fed with homegrown fodder. Although the epidemiological investigation hasn’t yet been completed, it is suspected that the animals became infected by human intermediation or through some food products.

Barabási made sure that the farmers knew to report every case and every dead animal to the relevant authorities from now on.

This past February, cases of ASF were found in two other areas in Kovászna County: Sepsiszentgyörgy/Sfântu Gheorghe and Sepsikőröspatak/Valea Crișulu. The infection was officially eradicated in April; more than 140 pigs had to be slaughtered in order to prevent the spread of the disease.


Title image: Mangalica pigs (Photo: hungaryfirst.hu)

Author: Attila Szoó