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Pig farmers urged to take steps to curb erysipelas

TAIPEI--The Council of Agriculture on Saturday urged farmers to step up management of their pigs' health following reports of swine erysipelas in southern Taiwan.

The bacterial disease — also known as “diamond skin disease” — causes lesions on the pigs' skin and fever in the swine. If discovered at a late stage, it could result in a high death rate.

Although there have only been a “few cases” reported so far, farmers should inject vaccines on schedule, carry out thorough sanitation and avoid buying pigs from a questionable source or origin, the council's Bureau of Animal and Plant Health Inspection and Quarantine said in a statement.

Once they notice symptoms of the bacterial disease, farmers should report the cases to local authorities immediately so that they can effectively tackle the situation with immediate measures aimed at prevention and treatment, the bureau added.

The disease comes amid soaring prices for live pigs and pork as around 210,000 young swine have died from a viral disease outbreak starting in October in central and southern Taiwan.

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