More than 6,000 animals received primary veterinary care in the aftermath of Hurricane Felix, which struck one of the poorest areas of Nicaragua, Central America, last month.
The powerful Category Five storm, with winds estimated at 257 kilometers per hour and waves that rose 5.4 meters above normal tides, hit the Northern Atlantic Autonomous Region (RAAN), home of the Miskito community.
One week after the hurricane, representatives from WSPA, member society Universidad de Ciencias Comerciales (UCC) and the Nicaraguan Ministry of Agriculture (MAGFOR) visited the region to assess the situation. They also provided emergency care for more than 100 animals wounded by the storm.
After this initial evaluation, three veterinary teams of six people, made up of UCC students and veterinarians from MAGFOR, were deployed to the RAAN region.
The veterinary teams visited the Miskito villages hardest hit by the hurricane, with WSPA’s Disaster Management Veterinary Coordinator, Juan Carlos Murillo, heading the operation.
Murillo said: “We provided primary veterinary care for 6,310 animals, including cows, horses, pigs, chickens and dogs. We checked and de-wormed them and administered preventive medicine. The idea is to strengthen these animals so they can deal better with their current situation and don’t get sick later.”
“Most of the villagers who brought animals to be treated told our team members: ‘Uba tinky yan mani dukira doukramba kli yu wala bal bahuna watsna’. In their language this means: ‘Thank you very much for all that you have done for our animals’” said Murillo.