Report 154: MV Greyman Express - Cattle exported to Indonesia in July 2019

Cattle exported to Indonesia in July 2019

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Voyage summary

A consignment of 3,635 cattle were loaded onto the MV Greyman Express at Darwin between 3 and 4 July 2019. The vessel departed on 4 July 2019. The cattle were discharged at Tanjung Priok, Indonesia between 8 and 9 July 2019, making this a 7 day voyage.

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

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

The following comments represent a summary of key observations and have 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 undertaken using low stress stock handling techniques and no issues were identified.

Pen densities were in accordance with the load plan and Australian Standards for the Export of Livestock (Version 2.3) 2011 (ASEL) requirements. The observer noted cattle were able to access feed and water easily directly after loading. Minor adjustments to the load plan were made on day 1 of the voyage and some gates were opened to provide extra space. The observer believes this contributed to the comfort of the cattle and good animal welfare outcomes.

Personnel

An experienced LiveCorp Accredited Stockperson (stockperson) accompanied the voyage and was responsible for implementing the exporters’ procedures to ensure the health and welfare of the livestock throughout the voyage. The stockperson worked well with the bosun and crew to maintain animal health and welfare throughout the voyage and was always quick to respond to potential animal welfare issues.

The observer noted the crew showed concern for the welfare of the livestock and worked quietly and diligently.

Daily routine

The daily management meeting was held at 10:00am and was attended by the Chief Officer (CO), bosun, stockperson and the observer. Items discussed included feed and water consumption, treatments, welfare issues and environmental conditions.

The stockperson did their rounds twice a day starting at 7:30am and 2:00pm, inspected the feeding troughs and checked the cattle for any health or welfare issues. Treatments were administered after rounds as required.

Two crew shared the night watch duties which were split into two 6 hour shifts. The observer conducted a night watch observation and noted the night watch person was carried out their duties which included ensuring clean water was available and monitoring any sick or injured animals.

The wet and dry bulb temperatures were recorded every morning prior to the daily meeting. Temperatures ranged from around 27ᵒC to 30ᵒC.

Feed and water

Sufficient pellets and chaff were loaded in accordance with the ASEL requirements for the duration of the projected 4 day voyage, along with the required 3 day contingency.

Pellets were fed three times a day starting at 7:00am, 10:30am and 3.30pm and chaff supplements were usually fed at 10:30am. The fodder was observed to be of good quality, with no mould or fines. One shy feeder was identified and the stockperson removed this animal to a separate pen to provide better access to food and water.

The vessel had an automatic watering system that provided water to all the decks. The observer noted that water troughs were cleaned out regularly during the day. No feed or water issues were observed during the voyage.

Ventilation

The vessel was purpose built to carry livestock and the ventilation system worked effectively across on all the decks. The ventilation system also assisted in keeping the pad dry and pliable.

Additionally, hatches on some decks were kept open to allow for natural light and natural ventilation. The cattle did not exhibit any signs of heat stress or discomfort. There was only a mild rise in temperature and humidity recorded during the voyage.

Pen conditions

Pad conditions over the entire voyage were considered very good. The pad remained dry and any water spillages were addressed by applying sawdust. Due to the short duration of the voyage the stockperson deemed it was not necessary to wash down the decks.

The observer noted that at least 50% of the livestock in the pens were able to lie down at any one time.

Health and welfare

The stockperson promptly administered a small number of treatments for lameness and swollen legs during the voyage. Medications used during the voyage included anti-inflammatories and antibiotics.

There were 2 mortalities for the voyage consisting of a lame animal that was unable to rise and was found dead in the morning on Day 3. The second animal broke a leg on discharge and was given pain killers, then euthanised.

As there were so few illnesses and treatments on the voyage, the stockperson utilised hospital pen space, when it was appropriate, to enable livestock to have more room.

Discharge

The discharge of the cattle proceeded slowly due to lengthy traffic delays in Jakarta. This meant the return trip by the trucks to the port took some time. During the discharge process, cattle always had access to feed and water. No welfare issues were identified during discharge.

Conclusion

Good weather and sea conditions contributed to the good health and welfare of the cattle. The stockpersons responded to animal health issues in a timely and professional manner. The crew were proactive in identifying and reporting issues as they arose and all cattle were discharged in good health and condition.

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

Last reviewed: 21 November 2019
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