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Galway TB stats on the decline

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Greyhound trainer Kevin Connolly takes his dogs for a walk near Atherny. Photograph: Hany Marzouk.

THE incidence of Bovine TB in Galway continues to decline although stubborn pockets of the disease still remain in the county, according to the latest figures available.

For the first nine months of his year, the percentage of Galway herds that were restricted due to TB stood at 2.26%, slightly higher than the national average of 2.06%.

The figures – provided to the Farming Tribune by Galway IFA Livestock Committee Chairman, Michael Flynn – showed that there were 763 reactors in the county from January to September this year.

Out of a total of 8,725 herds tested in Galway up to the end of September, 197 of them were restricted due to TB.

Back in 2008 the incidence of TB in Galway herds stood at 5.61% but since 2014 that figure has been under 3% and is on target to be at its lowest ever in 2016.

However, according to Michael Flynn, the ‘perfect scenario’ of Ireland being declared ‘TB free’ is still a long way off with 2030 put forward as a target date by some Department officials.

“What we are seeing are incidences of TB where roads or major development work has taken place and the wildlife has been disturbed.

“Over the past year or so, we’ve seen that with the motorway development from Gort down towards Tuam, where little pockets of the disease have emerged,” said Michael Flynn.

He said that the cycle of the disease in badgers needed to be broke with a cull of the infected animals followed by a comprehensive vaccination programme.

“This really is the only way that we will make progress in finally eradicating a disease that has cost farmers and the State hundreds of millions of euro down through the years,” said Michael Flynn.

He said that the Bovine TB eradication programme had now gone on for over a half a century and while the figures were ‘going the right way’ there was still a long way to go in terms of Ireland being declared TB free.

 

Connacht Tribune

Looking into the future

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Stephen Canavan: Open invitation to attend information meetings.

CHANGING times in farming and fears about the future has prompted Galway IFA to hold a series of meetings across the county over the coming week.

Concerns over the new environmental scheme; Budget changes; the carbon emissions issue; the new CAP (Common Agricultural Policy); nitrates; spiralling input costs; as well as other local issues, will be dealt with at the three meetings.

The first of the meetings takes place in Loughrea on Monday night next (Oct. 10); the Ard Rí House Hotel in Tuam on Tuesday night (Oct. 11; and the Lake Hotel Oughterard, on Wednesday night (Oct. 12). All the meetings start at 8.30pm.

Galway IFA Chairman, Stephen Canavan, said that the main purpose of the meetings was to try and keep farmers fully informed and ‘up-to-speed’ with a range of issues that were of crucial importance to their future.

He also told the Farming Tribune that the range and complexity facing farmers at present was causing anxiety among the farming community during what were very uncertain times.

“We want to try and ensure that West of Ireland farmers are up-to-date and well-informed as to the issues that they are facing and what could be coming down the track.

“I am encouraging farmers who may not have the full facts on issues to attend and raise their concerns on any topic they wish.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Connacht Tribune

Accidents on farms ‘far higher than stats’

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Peter Gohery, Galway IFA Rural Development Rep

TEAGASC statistics of 4,500 non-fatal farm accidents every year are probably only a fraction of the true figure, according to a Galway farmer and IFA representative.

Eyrecourt’s Peter Gohery and Galway IFA Rural Development Rep told the Farming Tribune that many injuries suffered on farms were not being reported as farm related.

“Maybe there’s a stigma there about being injured on a farm but we do need to get the true statistics out there about the number of injuries that are actually happening on farms.

“I know from speaking to doctors and consultants that many patients presenting with injuries suffered on farms are for some reason reluctant to say that it happened on the farm,” Peter Gohery told the Farming Tribune.

In last week’s Budget 2023, Minister of State at the Dept. of Agriculture, Martin Heydon, confirmed that the Department’s budget for farm safety was being increased to €2.5 million in 2023.

“Unfortunately, 10 people have lost their lives in fatal farm incidents this year. That is 10 too many – 10 farms, families, and communities left devastated.

“We know farm safety is inextricably linked to farmer health and wellbeing. That is why I plan to extend the On Feirm Ground initiative from farms advisors to other professionals working with farmers next year,” said Minister Heydon.

He added that he also wanted to prioritise getting more physical safety infrastructure onto farm with plans for a 60% grant rate in TAMS for farm safety investments.

Minister Heydon said that the more recent figures from Teagasc indicated at least 4,500 non-fatal accidents occurring on farms each year in the Republic of Ireland.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

 

 

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Connacht Tribune

Ballinasloe to celebrate 300-years of fairs

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Niall Clarke, Kevin Murray, Sinead Manning, Thomas Gullane, Maeve Keegan, Kieran Egan, Ciara Croffey, Mary Phelan & Mal Croffey at the launch of the Ballinasloe Fair & Festival 2022.

THREE hundred years of horse fairs in Ballinasloe will be celebrated this coming weekend when the event returns following the Covid interruption of recent years.

The main equestrian days of the show are on this coming Saturday, Sunday and Monday with the Fairgreen being the place to be this weekend with every breed of horse and pony on display.

Connemaras, Trotting Ponies and Irish Draughts will all be featuring but apart from the horses, there’s also a full line-up of entertainment events.

Fun events, street stalls, fireworks, tug-o-war, street and vintage parades, arts and crafts, music and children’s events will all feature strongly over the weekend and into next week.

The fair is expected to attract in the region of 85,000 visitors from October 2 to 9, for an event that dates back to the early 1700s.

According to the fair organisers, while there is little detail available about the early days of the fair, the London Times reported in the late 1700s that the fair sold over 65,000 sheep and 6,500 cattle.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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