Report 77: MV Ganado Express - Cattle exported to Indonesia in February 2019

Cattle exported to Indonesia in February 2019

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Voyage summary

A consignment of 3,633 cattle were loaded onto the MV Ganado Express at the Port of Darwin on 9 February 2019. The cattle were discharged in Jakarta, Indonesia on 14 and 15 February 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 the cattle was 0.03% (one mortality). The mortality rate does not exceed the reportable mortality rate. The cause of the mortality was 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 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 and contingencies.

Loading

The cattle were loaded in accordance with the load plan and the load plan was consistent with the Australian Standards for the Export of Livestock (Version 2.3) 2011 (ASEL) requirements. In all pens at least 50% of the animals were able to lie down at any one time.

The livestock were fed and had access to water immediately after loading.

Personnel

There was a LiveCorp Accredited Stockperson (stockperson) on board. The stockperson was experienced, capable and worked with the crew to maintain animal health and welfare throughout the voyage. The Chief Officer (CO) was very competent and was aware of ASEL requirements. All general seamen were assigned to stock duties during the voyage.

Daily routine

Every day at 11.00am, the daily meeting was attended by the stockperson, bosun and CO. The discussions included the daily routine, livestock management and submission of the daily report. The observer considered the information included in the daily report to be accurate.

The stockperson walked all decks each morning prior to feeding to inspect the cattle. Treatments were administered after completion of the rounds. The stockperson was regularly seen during the day on the cattle decks checking the condition of the cattle and monitoring feed and water.

A night watchperson was assigned to a four hour shift with one crew on duty for 4 hours each between 4:00pm and 8:00am. The duties of the night watch person was to monitor water troughs and maintain watch on the cattle decks.

Feed and water

Enough fodder for two voyages was loaded in Darwin. Pelleted feed was stored in silos and was distributed to chutes on each deck. The crew manually filled the troughs.  The livestock were fed three times per day (8:00am, 10:30am and 3:00pm). There were at least 2 troughs per pen and all stock appeared to be able to access feed without undue competition. Average consumption increased steadily throughout the voyage.

Water supply was plentiful because water was loaded in Darwin and also generated by a reverse osmosis plant. Water was supplied to automatically filling nose bowls in the corners of pens and manually filled troughs. Water trough space for water was considered appropriate.

Ventilation

The vessel has 5 enclosed livestock decks. Ventilation was supplied by a system of six supply and six exhaust fans. Air flow was directed into the pens via the overhead ducting system. Hatches on Deck 5 were left open for the entire voyage to aid ventilation. Deck 5 tended to be warmer than the lower decks. The sun deck was hosed down during the day to assist in keeping it cooler. Overall the ventilation was considered good.

The temperature readings were taken between 9:30am and 10:30am each day using a hand held device. The average maximum temperature range was 29°C – 32°C dry bulb and 79% – 80% humidity.

Pen conditions

Bedding was loaded in Darwin and used to line ramps and lane ways during loading and discharge, provide bedding for the hospital pens and to improve pad condition when required.

Pad conditions were very wet at the commencement of the voyage but improved rapidly as crew applied sawdust to problem pens at the direction of the stockperson. Overall, pad formation was good throughout the voyage and no pen washing was required.

During the voyage, a number of pens became wet due to water leaks. However crew were quick to rectify the pad condition with application of sawdust and repair of the leaks.

Health and welfare

By the second day, most of the cattle began to settle down and become accustomed to the movement of the crew and the ship. There was some variation in the condition of the livestock loaded.

Five steers were treated for swollen legs and remained in their original pens. Hospital pens were available throughout the voyage on all decks. One hospital pen was utilized to hold one lame heifer in poor condition on day three of the voyage. The heifer improved and was discharged without incident.

One steer became recumbent on the ramp and was unable to be discharged. The animal was euthanised.

No signs of heat stress were detected during the voyage.

Discharge

Sawdust was applied to the ramps before discharge commenced. Discharge was efficient given the limitations of the trucks and the livestock were handled with due regard to welfare.

Feed and water access was maintained to all pens during discharge.

Conclusion

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

Feeding, watering, treatments and pad maintenance were completed in a timely manner.

Overall, this voyage seemed well organised with both the ship’s crew and stockperson capable and demonstrating care and attention to the health and welfare of the livestock.


Last reviewed: 4 November 2019
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