Report 101: MV Brahman Express - Cattle exported to Indonesia in March 2019
Cattle exported to Indonesia in March 2019
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The MV Brahman Express commenced loading 4,118 cattle in Broome on 22 March 2019 and departed on 24 March 2019. The vessel discharged the cattle in Belawan, Indonesia from 29 March 2019 to 31 March 2019, making this a 10 day voyage.
There were no mortalities on this voyage.
Livestock on-board were managed in compliance with Australian Standards for the Export of Livestock (Version 2.3) 2011 (ASEL).
The following comments represent a summary of key observations from the Independent Observer (observer). The summary has been approved by the observer who accompanied the voyage.
Implementation of procedures to ensure health and welfare of livestock
Exporter arrangements were available to address procedures relating to livestock management from loading through to discharge, including contingencies.
No issues related to the loading process were noted by the observer. The cattle were loaded in accordance with the load plan. One pen was identified as not loaded to ASEL requirements regarding the implementation of procedures to ensure the health and welfare of the livestock. This pen was stocked with 2 additional cattle, but did not appear to be more tightly packed than those in other pens.
There were nine officers on this vessel, including the master, the chief officer (CO), bosun, the chief engineer and four engine room officers (including an electrician).
Two LiveCorp Accredited Stockpersons (stockpersons) accompanied the voyage and were responsible for the health and welfare of the livestock.
Thirteen crew members carried out animal-related tasks such as feeding, watering and trough cleaning, according to instructions given by the stockpersons and bosun.
Daily meetings were held at 6:45am and were attended by the master, officers, bosun and stockpersons. Any issues from the previous day were raised and discussed, include feeding, watering, maintenance issues, and general animal health and welfare.
Temperature and humidity recordings were manually taken at 10:30am daily at multiple, but consistent, points on each deck. Temperature and humidity levels generally decreased during the course of the voyage This was attributed to the passage north towards the equator, and navigation away from the Indian Ocean into more sheltered Indonesian waters.
Night watch occurred in three shifts. Two crew members were assigned to patrol cattle decks during each shift, to observe cattle and clean and fill water troughs as required.
Feed and water
Fodder was stored on-board in three covered silos. Chaff was mixed in with rations of pelleted feed. As there was generally feed left in troughs from previous feedings, feed was effectively supplied ad libitum in most pens for the duration of the voyage.
Drinking water was delivered to pens through nose bowls, and supplemented by water troughs. As both water troughs and nose bowls shared a common water source, the use of more than three water hoses to fill water troughs at any one time resulted in a decrease in water pressure that prevented nose bowls from filling. The department sought further clarification from the observer on this issue. The observer has clarified that staff enacted changes to water system demand from hoses, so as to not compromise flow rates to nose bowls. There were no indicators of an impact on animal welfare, due to a lack of water, at any time during the voyage.
Ventilation pipes ran along the tops of pens, with a positive pressure system drawing air and moisture from decks into the pipeline. Doors to the outside environment on Deck 5 were left open during the voyage to increase airflow on that deck.
No indicators of heat stress were observed on this voyage.
The voyage was of short duration, and no wash-downs were carried out. The vessel entered Indonesian waters on day 3 and, from this time, contamination from animal waste material was prohibited.
Health and welfare
There were no mortalities on this voyage.
Treatments were administered, by the stockpersons, to 6 animals for either lameness or swollen limbs. Two animals were moved to the hospital pens for lameness and for shy feeding.
No issues during discharge were noted by the observer.
The exporter arrangements were observed to be implemented during the voyage and to be compliant with ASEL requirements.