Prevalence, predictors and financial implication of cattle recumbency at the Kumasi Animal Market, Ghana
Livestock are expectedly at one point or the other transported from one place to another for breeding, sale or slaughter. Conditions of handling, loading and transportation, stress encountered during the journey and when off-loading are a major factor of recumbency and/ bruising. A survey on recumbency in cattle was conducted at the animal market of the Kumasi Abattoir Company Limited (KACL) in Kaase, in the Kumasi Metropolitan Area of Ghana. The study involved 7960 cattle transported to the slaughterhouse from local towns in Ghana as well as from neighbouring countries. Recumbent and moribund cattle were identified and information was compiled based on the regions (sources) they were transported from, as well as the varying conditions of their handling and transportation. A total of 109 cases of recumbent and moribund cattle were recorded, with an average of 5 recumbent cases per day. Study results showed that cases of recumbency involved 1.4% of the total number of cattle (7960) counted in the animal market and 5.3% of the number of cattle (2069) transported from sources with registered cases of recumbency. The study also revealed higher frequency of recumbency where animals were transported over long distances of >500km (68%); or in relatively larger batch loads of >20 animals (76%). Calculating at an assumed loss of 50% value for each case of affliction, the financial implication of cattle recumbency at the animal market of the KACL is estimated at a loss of GH₵ 54500 per month or GH₵ 654000 (approx. USD 163500) per annum.
Keywords: Cattle recumbency, Slaughterhouses, Transportation, Financial losses, Ghana