Chemical residues a danger after fire

Eve HallPRODUCTION ADVICE - JULY 2020 - ANIMAL HEALTH

By Eve Hall
District Veterinarian

P: 0439 078 989 | E: eve.hall@lls.nsw.gov.au

Are you a fire-affected landholder undertaking the gruelling clean-up process? Damaged farm structures, vehicles and machinery, and rubbish sites can present as significant chemical hazard risks to livestock.

One example is lead poisoning, often from damaged lead acid batteries. Cattle are naturally curious animals and the taste of lead salt residues on and around batteries can be very attractive. Lead exposure may result in direct losses through illness and death, which may be further compounded by the costs associated with laboratory testing and reduced management flexibility when livestock must be detained on-farm.

Be sure to identify and manage any potential hazards on your property, especially in the aftermath of bushfire. For more information on managing residue risks on your property, or if you have concerns about the health of your livestock, you can contact your nearest District Veterinarian.

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