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More Than 40,000 Livestock Killed in NW China Quake

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More than 40,000 head of livestock were killed in the 7.1-magnitude earthquake that struck the Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Yushu, northwest China's Qinghai Province, last week, said an official with the provincial agricultural authorities Monday.

The earthquake had killed 40,879 livestock, 7.6 percent of the region's total, as of Sunday, said Zhang Wenhua, deputy director of the provincial bureau of agriculture and animal husbandry.

The total comprised 27,714 cattle, 13,005 sheep, 160 horses and 900 Tibetan mastiffs, Zhang said.

In addition, 1,700 weather-proof shelters for livestock collapsed in the earthquake and 1,300 shelters were damaged, while 300 thatched shacks were toppled and 700 thatched shacks damaged.

Organized by the Ministry of Agriculture and local agricultural authorities, three teams have worked on safely disposing of and disinfecting livestock carcases since Sunday, he said.

Disinfection of the debris and ruins also started Sunday, and more than 100 quarantine workers organized by local health departments were working on preventing animal epidemics, Zhang said.

A 7.1-magnitude quake struck the Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Yushu early Wednesday. At least 1,944 people were killed and 12,135 injured, according to Monday's official tally.

(Xinhua News Agency April 20, 2010)

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