‘Farmers contribute to stray animal problem’

2017-06-08 06:02

DAY-old bull calves are sold dirt cheap or given by farmers to informal settlement residents - contributing to the ever-increasing stray animal problem in the Jeffreys Bay area.

According to an irate eye-witness, some local dairy farmers sell these gorgeous doe-eyed male calves - deemed impractical and uneconomical - for between R40 and R80 to residents of Ocean View, Tokyo Sexwale and surrounding informal settlements. Some farmers even give their bull calves away free.

“Male calves are of no use to a dairy farmer and it is thus not financially worthwhile to spend any resources on these calves,” she says. “Not having any use for these calves, they are removed from their mothers within days of birth.”

According to the eye-witness, this is not an isolated case.

“Over the years I have seen many a farmer off-loading trailers full of calves in the infor-mal settlements.”

Another Jeffreys Bay resident says he too witnessed the selling of calves in Ocean View on more than one occasion.

According to Social Services Portfolio Councillor, Daniel Benson, the Kouga Muni-cipality is aware that animals are sold at very low prices.

“It is one of the contributing factors to stray animals. We have put this before the commercial farmers as a challenge in meetings we have had with them. Unfortunately, we are not in a position to forbid them to sell or to dictate how much they should ask,” says Benson.

“Weekly law enforcement operations are carried out, which include the impounding of stray animals. Owners then have to bear the costs of the pound to secure release.

However, more education needs to be done in our communities on how to care for animals and the dangers they pose to human beings once they are let loose and left unsupervised.”

To report stray animal, contact 042 291 0250.

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