Report 157: MV Gudali Express - Cattle exported to Indonesia in July 2019

Cattle exported to Indonesia in July 2019


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Voyage summary

A consignment of 3,824 cattle was loaded onto the MV Gudali Express at the Port of Broome on 9 July 2019 and departed on the same day. All the cattle were discharged from the vessel at the Port of Panjang, Indonesia on 14 July 2019, making this a 5 day voyage.

An independent observer boarded the vessel at Broome and remained on board until completion of discharge.

The mortality rate for the cattle was 0.03 % (one head). The mortality rate does not exceed the reportable level. The causes of the mortality was not considered to be linked to any systemic failure by the exporter.

The following are a summary of key observations of the observer who accompanied the 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, including contingencies.


The cattle were loaded in accordance with the load plan, they were fed immediately after loading and had access to water in accordance with the Australian Standards for the Export of Livestock 2011 (version 2.3) (ASEL) requirements. All the cattle in the pens had access to feed troughs and room to move freely to and from the trough locations.

The observer noted that there was sufficient room for at least 50%, and in some pens up to 80%, of the cattle, to lie down at one time.


An experienced LiveCorp Accredited Stockperson (stockperson) on-board the vessel was responsible for implementing the exporters’ procedures to ensure the health and welfare of the livestock throughout the voyage. The stockperson and the crew worked throughout the voyage to maintain animal health and welfare according to the ASEL requirements.

The master was active throughout the voyage and was regularly seen on the cattle decks observing operations and speaking to the crew.

Daily routine

A cattle management meeting was held each day at 10:00am and was attended by the master, Chief Officer, stockperson, bosun and observer. Topics discussed included the condition of the cattle, feed and water consumption, treatments administered to lame, sick or injured animals, recorded temperatures and expected time of arrival.

One crew member was rostered on a rotating 6 hour rotating night watch shift between 6:00pm until 6:00am.   

Feed and water

The vessel feeding system delivered fodder to each deck and the crew manually filled troughs. Each pen contained two or three feed troughs depending on the pen size. The cattle were fed pelleted fodder twice a day and it was dust free and palatable.

Water was produced by reverse osmosis plants and was supplied through automatic nose bowls in each pen as well as in a plastic trough for each pen that was manually filled by the crew.

No issues with feed or water supply were noted.


The observer noted the ventilation system was effective. The system supplied air through large PVC pipes over the cattle pens that directed air into the pens. An exhaust system removed stale hot air from each deck.

Daily temperatures were recorded using a hand held device. Temperatures ranged from 26 - 27°C wet bulb, 29 - 30°C dry bulb with the average relative humidity steady at around 79%.  

Pen conditions

The pads were soft and provided relatively dry and comfortable bedding. No deck wash out was undertaken due to the short duration of the voyage. The ventilation system assisted with evaporation in the wetter areas in pens.

Health and welfare

The stockperson inspected all the pens during the morning and afternoon feeding times and in between as required. Sick or injured animals were identified, treated and isolated into designated hospital pens where their recovery was monitored.

Hospital pens were available and clearly marked on each deck.

One mortality was recorded on the last morning of the voyage during discharge. The animal was found dead in its pen and the reason for the mortality was not definitively established but was presumed to be from an internal cause.

One steer was placed in the hospital pen because it was lighter in condition compared with the other cattle. The animal was treated, monitored and was able to be discharged successfully. A small number of cattle were treated for lameness and all recovered. At the time of discharge, there were no detected lame or injured cattle.

No symptoms of heat stress were observed during the voyage.


The livestock were discharged in an effective and orderly process with small groups moved from the below decks. Trucks were readily available and few delays were experienced. No incidents or injuries were noted.


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

Last reviewed: 24 December 2019
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