Citizen campaign to avoid African swine fever
The Government of Catalonia launches an information campaign aimed at the whole society with the aim of preventing the arrival of African Swine Fever (PPA) in Catalonia and detect it as soon as possible if there is some suspicious case.
African swine fever is a contagious disease that affects domestic pigs and wild boar (but not humans), some endemic swine species in Africa, such as Phacochoerus, Potamochoerus and giant forest hogs, act as reservoirs of the virus in this continent. The ticks of the genus Ornitodorus (Ornitodorus moubata in Africa and Ornitodorus erraticus in the Iberian Peninsula) can act vectors of the virus and where also the ASFV can also multiply. This disease is not transmitted to humans but the consequences could be very serious in the pig sector and also for the environment, since mortality levels are close to 100%.
The concern is urgent since between September and October 2018 more than 100 wild boar killed or slaughtered in Belgium, those with the virus, have been reported. In fact, they have been detected in an area very close to the border with France and Luxembourg, and the risk of it reaching the Peninsula is high due to the transport of live animals and the exchange of food.
There are available two posters and a triptych to inform all citizens, especially at strategic points such as entrances to natural areas, forests or hunting areas. The basic recommendations are:
- If someone finds a dead boar in the forest, do not touch it at any time and notify the rural agents.
- Avoid leaving scraps of meat or sausages within reach of wild boar.
- If you have touched a dead boar you must clean your hands and all your clothes.
Check the African Swine Fever FAQs, by Lilliane Ganges, IRTA-CReSA researcher.