Excessive nitrate in fodder kills four buffaloes in Nawanshahr

The owner had bought them for Rs 4 lakh

Excessive nitrate in fodder kills four buffaloes in Nawanshahr

Picture for representational purpose only.

Tribune News Service

Nawanshahr, May 22

Gurlal Singh from Dayalpur village in Nawanshahr couldn’t believe his eyes when he saw four of his pregnant buffaloes lying unconscious on the ground. Three of them were dead while the fourth one was unconscious.

The owner fed them immature fodder. In this season, when there is no rain and during this draught-like situation, nitrate gets accumulated on the plant. It's not necessary that urea was sprinkled, a plant anyway takes nitrogen from the soil, but at this time, the accumulation was more which is why it proved lethal. — Dr Kuldeep Singh Atwal, District Veterinary Officer

He immediately called the doctor and after examination, it was found out that the buffaloes had consumed fodder with excessive nitrate in it. The fourth one died while undergoing treatment. Gurlal had four buffaloes and four cows. He shared that he had fed the same fodder to cows too, but they were fine.

Dr Kuldeep Singh Atwal, District Veterinary Officer, said he checked the condition of the cattle and then got the fodder checked in the laboratory, and it was found that the cattle died due to excessive nitrate.

“The owner fed them immature fodder. In this season, when there is no rain and during this draught-like situation, nitrate gets accumulated on the plant. It’s not necessary that urea was sprinkled, a plant anyway takes nitrogen from the soil, but at this time, the accumulation was more which is why it proved lethal,” he said.

On the cows’ condition, he said they were doing fine as eating capacity of a cow was not same as that of a buffalo, which is why they survived.

Gurlal Singh shared he was ruined. “The incident happened on Friday and I have not recovered from the shock of death of my cattle. I had brought them for Rs 4 lakh. It’s not only a monetary loss, but personal too. They were like my family members. I used to pay school fees of my children and make ends meet because of them,” an emotional Gurlal said.

The veterinary officer informed that it was very important at what stage and height a fodder is being cut. “The length of the fodder that was fed was below the knees which was not right. The fodder should always be cut only when it reaches recommended heights. Also, if there is no water, and the fodder is dried, it should be watered again and again before feeding, and immature fodder should never be fed,” the officer shared.

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