Report 102: MV Gudali Express - Cattle exported to Indonesia in March 2019

Cattle exported to Indonesia in March 2019

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Voyage summary

A consignment of 3,731 cattle were loaded on the MV Gudali Express in Broome on 26 March 2019 and the vessel departed on 26 March 2019. The cattle were discharged at Panjang, Indonesia, on 31 March 2019, making this a 6 day voyage.

An Independent Observer (observer) boarded the vessel at Broome and remained on-board until completion of discharge.

The mortality rate for the cattle was 0.05% for cattle (2 mortalities). This does not exceed the reportable mortality rate. The causes of these mortalities were not considered to be linked to any systemic failure by the exporter.

The following comments represent a summary of key observations and has been approved by the observer who accompanied this voyage.

Independent observations of the implementation of procedures to ensure health and welfare of livestock

Exporter documentation

Exporter arrangements were available to address procedures relating to livestock management from loading through to discharge and contingencies.

Loading

Loading was efficient with large livestock carrying trucks arriving in an organised fashion and assisted by proficient and skilled stevedores.

Preparation and loading of stock was noted to be in accordance with the load plan.

The LiveCorp Accredited Stockperson (stockperson) and all the crew were professional and vigilant ensuring their duties in animal husbandry are of a high standard.

Personnel

The stockperson on board was responsible for implementing the exporters’ procedures to ensure the health and welfare of the livestock throughout the voyage. The Stockperson had many years of experience on-board livestock vessels.

The observer noted the personnel were all experienced and undertook their duties in a professional manner.

The night watch operated in two shifts of two crewmembers between 6:00pm and 6:00am.

Daily routine

Management meetings were held each day at around 10:00am and were attended by the Chief Officer (CO), the stockperson and the observer. Issues discussed covered the condition of the cattle, feed, water, stock welfare and any outcomes or issues from the previous day. The master attended one meeting.

The stockperson oversaw animal welfare from loading to discharge. On the first day of the voyage adjustments were made to the numbers of cattle in pens in order to meet Australian Standards for the Export of Livestock (Version 2.3) 2011 (ASEL) requirements. The stockperson was constantly monitoring and checking the cattle. Crew members worked on a 6 hour rotating system over 24 hours. They observed cattle for injuries, ensured adequate feed and water and cleared the alley ways of excess fodder.

Throughout this voyage, the observer was able to conduct random observations on a daily basis inspecting all 5 decks. The crew were constantly monitoring the cattle’s welfare. Feeding occurred at different times during the day including 7am first feed, 10:30am top up, 1:30pm chaff and a 3:30pm full trough feed.

The stockperson would visit all pens to observe animals; and to clean, check, and fill pressure activated drinking bowls.

Feed and water

Sufficient pellets and chaff was available for the entire voyage. Pellets were stored in silos whilst chaff was stored in bags. The observer noted that often before feeding there would be pellets remaining in the troughs attached to pen railings.

Feeding and watering typically took about 2 hours. During this time the additional water troughs attached to pen railings were repeatedly filled using hoses.

The observer noted that prior to morning feeding and watering, at times all of the cattle were observed to be lying down and resting in pens.

Ventilation

Ventilation to the decks and pens was supplied by high pressure supply ducts. There were six large extraction points on Decks 4 and 5, with four large extraction points on Decks 1, 2 and 3.

Temperature readings were recorded at various times each day with temperatures averaging at a dry bulb temperature of 30°C, a wet bulb temperature of 27°C with a humidity of 79%.

The observer noted the ventilation system functioned effectively and there was no evidence of panting or respiratory distress during the voyage.

Pen conditions

Wash-down of the decks was not required due to the short duration of the voyage. No issues with pad conditions were noted.

Health and welfare

The stockperson was experienced in managing livestock on voyages, and was observant and vigilant in relation to the health and welfare of the livestock. The observer noted the stockperson constantly checked the cattle to detect any early signs of lameness or injuries and would always attended to the water holders to ensure there was ample fodder. On occasion when the feed and water levels were found to be low, the stockperson immediately contacted the crew members to attend to the matter.

During the voyage, no cattle presented signs of transport related health stress indicators such as coughing, respiratory distress or panting, loose faeces or diarrhoea, not eating or drinking.

One animal suffered a broken back leg requiring it to be euthanised and one died suddenly on the ship during unloading. Euthanasia was carried out using a penetrative bolt gun with a single shot.

Discharge

Cattle were discharged at the Port of Panjang with no issues while the crew, stockperson and stock handlers maintained animal welfare as a priority.

Conclusion

The exporter arrangements were observed to be implemented during the voyage and to be compliant with ASEL.

Last reviewed: 28 November 2019
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