Livestock farmers within Perkerra Scheme in Marigat Sub- County are counting losses after 22 of their cows died under mysterious circumstance while grazing in the fields.
John Lemartew, one of the farmers who lost four cows, said his livestock had been grazing along River Perkerra in the past four days consecutively, but on Wednesday at around 1pm, he was shocked to see the affected animals stagger before falling down and dying.
“It’s saddening that for the past four days I have been grazing my livestock here (Perkerra River), only to get shocked when four of my cows died without portraying any symptom. Can it be someone poisoned our livestock?” he lamented.
The animals before succumbing, he noted, had foams at the mouth and in couple of minutes, they started staggering, falling down and subsequently died.
While staring at the carcasses in despair with watery eyes, Lemartew said the animals were his source of livelihood and asked relevant authorities to fast track investigations to establish the exact cause of deaths.
At a distant, Julius Lomogir, a father of five, whose cows were also grazing in the same field said he lost three cows in a span of one hour, which he depended on solemnly to fend for his family as they were his only source of income.
He added that his animals were very healthy before the tragic incident occurred and he has not yet comprehended the manner they died.
“I would wish to believe that my cows just died out of disease but that is not the case, I strongly believe that someone might have contaminated our grazing zone, this is not normal,” he alleged.
Confirming the incident, Marigat Officer Commanding Station (OCS), Abdulahi Maalim, said when he received the devastating report from the affected farmers, the police rushed to the scene with the Sub-County Veterinary Officer Dr. Julius Cheruiyot where they found 14 cow dead.
“We are now investigating the matter, with the help of our Veterinary Department that has taken the samples to the laboratory to establish the cause of the deaths,” Maalim said.
Dr. Cheruiyot added they also received reports that eight cows exhibiting same symptoms had died a week ago at Longewan area.
The Veterinary Officer asked the livestock farmers to remain calm as the Department has commenced investigations, whose results will be released immediately.
He warned the local farmers against consuming the carcasses, saying they will be putting their lives in danger by eating the uninspected meat.
Early this week, a farmer at Maramar village in Baringo North Sub- County lost 11 cows due to an overdose of acaricide spray in the field.
By Jebichii Chepkwony