Kiryandongo get Shs30m Acaricide from MAAIF to fight against tsetse-flies

Kiryandongo Chief Administrative Office - CAO, Mr Martin Jacan Gwokto (L) holding a bottle of Sanga Delta acaricide after checking its expiry date

Kiryandongo, (UG):- Western Uganda’s Kiryandongo District has received 200 litres of acaricide from the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF) to combat the influx of tsetse flies along the Murchison Falls Park line and river Nile banks following a suspected case of sleeping sickness in the district. 

Wikipedia defines Acaricides as pesticides that kill members of the arachnid subclass Acari, which includes ticks and mites. Acaricides are used both in medicine and agriculture, although the desired selective toxicity differs between the two fields.

Earlier this week, the 200 litres of the pesticide received by Kiryandongo are estimated at a cost of 30 million Uganda shillings and will serve 10,000 heads of cattle against 77,432 heads in the entire district. 

According to a vector surveillance report carried out in Kiryandongo and Mutunda sub-counties in 2021 the prevalence of Trypanosomiasis is at 38% and 68% respectively which puts the livestock at stake.

This prevalence rate prompted the disease control focal persons for Bunyoro, Lango, Teso and central Uganda to design a project in line with vector control targeting the elimination of tsetse flies in areas surrounding large water bodies and Murchison Falls National Game Park.

According to Dr. Bingi Patrick the Senior Veterinary Officer Kiryandongo, tsetse control has different approaches ranging from clearing bushes around the homesteads or farms, sterile insect technique, and setting up of tsetse traps and live bait technology.

However, he says Kiryandongo has opted for spraying of animals along the park because tsetse flies prefer feeding on animals which is a big threat to livestock farmers.

“When these animals are sprayed with Delta methrine acaricide, they become moving traps for a month since the acaricide has a residual effect on the body of the animal for a month. Once a tsetse fly bites a sprayed animal, it dies,” Dr. Bingi remarked.

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He added that the acaricide provided by the government is not adequate for all the cattle population in the district but encouraged farmers to purchase and spray their animals. “This acaricide provided is for demonstration, so farmers are encouraged to adopt the technology and spray their animals.”

Martin Jacan Gwokto, the CAO Kiryandongo implored the veterinary officers to ensure efficient use of acaricide. He called upon them to be available at their stations to support the farmers.

On her pat, Kiryandongo District Chairperson, Ms Edith Aliguma Adyeri commended the government of Uganda through MAAIF for timely intervention towards the fight against the increasing tsetse flies in Kiryandongo.

She also urged the agricultural extension workers to continuously sensitise the community on the use of acaricide.

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Similarly, Mr Jonathan Akweteireho Deputy RDC Kiryandongo cautioned the technical staff against misuse of the acaricide provided by the government. He urged the extension workers to identify a central public venue and encourage farmers to establish a crush where their animals will be sprayed.

The most recent tsetse survey report of Kiryandongo for 2022 revealed that areas of Mutunda and Kiryandongo sub counties along the park line and the river Nile banks have a high population of tsetse flies trapped per day.

The spraying of the animals will be done every month for four months to align it with the lifecycle of a tsetse fly.

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