Livestock farmers in Gweri Sub County Soroti district are counting loses following the outbreak of liver fluke disease that has claimed more than 100 cattle.
Liver fluke (Fasciola hepatica) is a leaf-shaped parasite, which affects the liver and bile ducts of animals such as cattle, sheep, rabbits, deer and horses.
An infected animal presents with terminal diarrhoea, anaemia, and bottle jaw in animals and can reduce fertility. The disease can also infect humans when they consume contaminated fish or water.
In humans, liver fluke presents with abdominal pain, fever, nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea among others.
However, the disease cannot be spread from person to person.
Robert Olado, one of the affected farmers in Omugenya village says that he has so far lost five head of cattle to the disease, saying there is need for urgent intervention by the government to embark on massive immunization of animals in the entire sub-county.
Dr. Patrick Eyudu, the in Soroti District Production and Marketing Officer confirmed that the disease has affected the entire riverbank areas of Gweri and Awoja catchment area.
He, however, cautions farmers to desist from treating the animals on their own.
Dr. Eyudu also warned meat consumers against eating meat from dead animals saying it exposes them to catching anthrax, which is transmitted from animals to humans.