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 Post subject: Re: KNP to get an answer on Bovine Tuberculosis
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 2:05 pm 
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Scipio wrote:
Well, the Lions did not do too well after eating infected Buff. 8) So I would feel that utilisation of those Buff for human consumption might be a dangerous thing. :hmz:


Scipio...this is where it gets interesting. Yes the lions ate buffalo and got TB but where I worked in greater KNP the lions were still living to about 12 years for males and 15 years for females. Pride sizes were big and the overall lion population was healthy. So did the lions not do well? what is wrong with the lion population of KNP? I have always heard that KNP has too many lions not the otherway around.
Same with the buffalo. The buffalo are thriving in the park.

What is this supposedly bad disease doing to animals apart from taking out the individuals. So what if they are all carriers?

I would love to know!

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 Post subject: Re: KNP to get an answer on Bovine Tuberculosis
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 2:08 pm 
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Don't know if it is all the same in buff and UK animals?
bovine TB

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 Post subject: Re: KNP to get an answer on Bovine Tuberculosis
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 2:10 pm 
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Interesting point o-dog. And to add to what you have said, if say buffalo are not dying off due to TB, why are TB free buffalo at such a high price? What was the latest someone paid for a bull ... R20 mil?

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 Post subject: Re: KNP to get an answer on Bovine Tuberculosis
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 2:12 pm 
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If a cow tests positive for BTB in this country then it is slaughtered immediately and restrictions are placed on the whole herd on the farm, they can't be moved or sold for 3 months. The whole herd is then tested again and again until they are cleared. The meat cannot enter any food chain.

There is a vaccine for BTB but farmers won't use it as there is no test to distinguish between the vaccine and actual BTB, the reaction is the same. So the above restrictions would apply.

We have real problems in determining the vector in transmitting BTB. Most farmers blame badgers and we have started to introduce highly controversial badger culls in some areas to see if less badgers has any affect on the spread.

I would be really interested in any research that can stop the needless slaughter, both of badgers and cattle.

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 Post subject: Re: KNP to get an answer on Bovine Tuberculosis
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 2:17 pm 
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0-dog, according to my knowledge the Lion population (as well as the Buff) had a serious decline in the beginning of the original outbreak. They did however stabilise, due to immunity factors of those that survived that was stronger.

At the moment I have heard that there are still deaths in both species, but as you said, only individuals. :thumbs_up:

What I would like to know, is:

Dr Douw Grobler, did extensive "research" on BTB Buffalo together with a person who's name is not to be mentioned outside of the park, creating a BTB free Buffalo strain. Where is that info, and is it going to be utilised as well in conjunction with the current studies. :hmz:

Aunti Deebee, the Buff that is supposedly TB free, well, when I worked at a famous Big5 Reserve we sold a TB free buff for a few million, but the price was basicall so high cause of Vet. Restrictions. Not cause of the health of the Buff itself. It does seem that the Kruger Buff has done well even with TB, :hmz: It will be interesting to follow this research. :thumbs_up:

Then also, there is the case of the contractor that ran over the gazillion Impala at Skuks that was working on the old abbatoir in Skuks during that time. Could it be we are going to have some Buff Biltong in the shops shortly like the old days. :lol:


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 Post subject: Re: KNP to get an answer on Bovine Tuberculosis
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 2:22 pm 
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Scipio wrote:
Then also, there is the case of the contractor that ran over the gazillion Impala at Skuks that was working on the old abbatoir in Skuks during that time. Could it be we are going to have some Buff Biltong in the shops shortly like the old days.


Interesting observation...would they use the abattoir if the meat is not fit for consumption? Seems like a fruitless endeavour if they get the abattoir working only to throw away the meat once it is processed... :hmz:

Then again the abattoir might be for the slightly larger and more grey species.... :|

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 Post subject: Re: KNP to get an answer on Bovine Tuberculosis
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 2:28 pm 
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Or they could be getting it ready to be demolished.

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 Post subject: Re: KNP to get an answer on Bovine Tuberculosis
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 2:32 pm 
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DinkyBird wrote:
Interesting point o-dog. And to add to what you have said, if say buffalo are not dying off due to TB, why are TB free buffalo at such a high price? What was the latest someone paid for a bull ... R20 mil?


Dinkybird I must say it is quite odd isnt it? And yes totally why pay 20 million for an animal (think it was in that region too) when the disease version is 1000X cheaper or something if they are both going to live long? Maybe im missing something. Seems ridiculous. I did hear that one of the top Brahman judges or whichever species of cattle it is that thrives up in Ngamiland in Botswana, went down to judge some of these buffalo. From what I hear is that the top prices for these buffalo are because its getting so competitive to breed the biggest Bull with the biggest bos and widest horns that its more like farming for the biggest trophy than anything else!!

Im no expert on animal diseases but from what Ive heard and think about a lot is that diseases like Anthrax and BTB are as important if not more important in controlling animal populations than the predators. They tend to emerge in times of drought when the animal populations are already weak. The very weak succumb quickly with the result of less pressure being put on the resources left. Ironically these diseases in fact are saving the populations based on this thinking.
Ive heard with Anthrax that it usually emerges at the end of the dry season where spores (which I hear can last 100 years or more) are released around say water points with the constant pressure put on the area from the animals in search of water. Bascially Anthrax affecting animals usually times itself perfectly when the localized area reaches a threshold in its carrying capacity. Its almost immediate killing of animals reduces the populations of the area resulting in increased chance of survival of the plants and animals in that area.

Dont quote me on this but this is what Ive understood.

The outcome of this BTB study will be very interesting but I still would love to know more about this disease which I think scientists dont even seem to have much comprehension of as they keep doing these studies? or maybe they are getting somewhere.

Either way I think nature and its circles are acting in a much bigger way than we think. :thumbs_up:

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 Post subject: Re: KNP to get an answer on Bovine Tuberculosis
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 2:33 pm 
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saraf wrote:
Or they could be getting it ready to be demolished.


Ja, we fix the fridges before we break it down. :twisted:

But the reality is, that culling might still happen in Kruger due to the strain on the habitat created by overpopulation of larger herbivores. It is sad, but a fact that the riverine areas are emaciated during dry times by i.e. elephants, thus bringing species like the Pels Fishing owl to dangerous levels. :?


Last edited by DinkyBird on Tue Jul 03, 2012 2:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Helping Scipio remain on topic ...


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 Post subject: Re: KNP to get an answer on Bovine Tuberculosis
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 2:38 pm 
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Quick few facts (from courses in KNP and discussions with folk in the know):
Buffalo are the main reservoir of BTB in KNP since getting it from infected cattle on the borders of the park in the south back in the 50s. They have now spread it right through the park.
In general buffalo do not get sick from BTB, but they pass it on to other animals which do (Lions, kudu, bushbuck, etc)
Lions are eating raw meat....if the meat is cooked it should be OK for human consumption.
Many animal diseases might make the animal lose condition rather than kill it.....that is what happens with things like foot and mouth. It means the animal is useless for farming/butchering as it will have little meat or yield little milk for example. The effect is largely economic, but that is why they cull infected domestic animals.

I suspect they are wanting to see just what effect the BTB is having on the infected buffalo and the only way to do this is by autopsy. They have said they are looking at animals that have already been monitored, so they already will have some facts and figures to compare with the results of the autopsy.

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 Post subject: Re: KNP to get an answer on Bovine Tuberculosis
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 3:38 pm 
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Scipio wrote:
0-dog, according to my knowledge the Lion population (as well as the Buff) had a serious decline in the beginning of the original outbreak. They did however stabilise, due to immunity factors of those that survived that was stronger.

At the moment I have heard that there are still deaths in both species, but as you said, only individuals. :thumbs_up:

. :lol:


:hmz: it is interesting. So if there was a lion decline was it as a result of TB or was it as a result of the onset of the major wet period around year 2000 where the lions obviously wouldn't have thrived as in the drought of the mid and early 90's? Maybe TB killed lots of them but perhaps it affected many of the already weaker individuals thus curbing the population allowing the survival of the fittest.

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 Post subject: Re: KNP to get an answer on Bovine Tuberculosis
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 3:46 pm 
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saraf wrote:
If a cow tests positive for BTB in this country then it is slaughtered immediately and restrictions are placed on the whole herd on the farm, they can't be moved or sold for 3 months. The whole herd is then tested again and again until they are cleared. The meat cannot enter any food chain.

There is a vaccine for BTB but farmers won't use it as there is no test to distinguish between the vaccine and actual BTB, the reaction is the same. So the above restrictions would apply.

We have real problems in determining the vector in transmitting BTB. Most farmers blame badgers and we have started to introduce highly controversial badger culls in some areas to see if less badgers has any affect on the spread.

I would be really interested in any research that can stop the needless slaughter, both of badgers and cattle.


While I understand, I think that EU goes over the top sometimes. You should see how EU restrictions on the farming area around northern botswana has resulted in environmental disasters here. Really is sad!
First world has this knack for this sort of thing!

ecojunkie wrote:
Quick few facts (from courses in KNP and discussions with folk in the know):
Buffalo are the main reservoir of BTB in KNP since getting it from infected cattle on the borders of the park in the south back in the 50s. They have now spread it right through the park.
In general buffalo do not get sick from BTB, but they pass it on to other animals which do (Lions, kudu, bushbuck, etc)
Lions are eating raw meat....if the meat is cooked it should be OK for human consumption.
Many animal diseases might make the animal lose condition rather than kill it.....that is what happens with things like foot and mouth. It means the animal is useless for farming/butchering as it will have little meat or yield little milk for example. The effect is largely economic, but that is why they cull infected domestic animals.

I suspect they are wanting to see just what effect the BTB is having on the infected buffalo and the only way to do this is by autopsy. They have said they are looking at animals that have already been monitored, so they already will have some facts and figures to compare with the results of the autopsy.


Interesting Ecojunkie :thumbs_up: ...I have to question the fact that buffaloes dont get sick while lions, kudu etc do?
Kudu is yet another species which has absolutely taken over areas it wasnt as prevalent in in the past. Numbers were low in the 90's. I recall 4000 for the whole park. Now they are at least double that.

And why do we see these awfully weak buffalo which look to be prime examples of TB wasting away? Are you saying this isnt TB affecting the buffalo? Ive heard buffalo are great vectors of the disease but I thought they died too. Same with other species. Ag soo many questions, but great topic :thumbs_up:

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 Post subject: Re: KNP to get an answer on Bovine Tuberculosis
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 3:54 pm 
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O-dog, you didn't live through the BSE and Foot-and-mouth crises. Sometime people have to be protected from themselves.

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 Post subject: Re: KNP to get an answer on Bovine Tuberculosis
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 4:34 pm 
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I did say 'in general' the buffalo did not get sick......but then that is what this study is about! Any animal under stress will sicken from any infection etc. But the buffalo do act as carriers more than the other animals.

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 Post subject: Re: KNP to get an answer on Bovine Tuberculosis
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 5:06 pm 
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saraf wrote:
O-dog, you didn't live through the BSE and Foot-and-mouth crises. Sometime people have to be protected from themselves.



Sure :thumbs_up: ...the word pedantic still comes to mind and I say that being someone with an EU passport and much love for my EU routes. I still think many of first world policies force a stuff up of nature in African countries. If the buyers only new that the very meat they consume was to the detriment of the second largest wildebeest migration, I think they would have thought twice...but anyway this is a tangent and something for another thread I guess! :thumbs_up:

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