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Posted On: 22 August 2011 09:15 am
Updated On: 12 November 2020 02:11 pm

Qatar-bound sheep offloaded at Adelaide

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All 67,000 sheep aboard the Qatar-bound transport ship Al Messilah have been offloaded in Port Adelaide. The vessel returned to port last Friday after breaking down at sea. The sheep have been moved to a feedlot in Dublin, north of Adelaide, approved by the Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service, Sydney Morning Herald reported yesterday. More than 200 sheep died after the ship experienced mechanical failure less than a day after its departure. The offloaded sheep will be held under strict quarantine conditions until they reboard the ship. The federal agriculture, fisheries and forestry department said the welfare of the sheep is being given the highest priority. ABC News reported that a fleet of seven trucks shuttled back and forth from the dock to move the sheep to feedlots north of the city. Acting Australian chief veterinary officer, Mark Schipp, said 260 sheep had died on board but added the number was within the 2% permitted by industry guidelines. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) said inspectors were allowed to watch the off-loading operation yesterday morning. The sheep will wait at the feedlots until a ship is sent from Fremantle to collect them later this month. Trucking company Calomba Transport has been contracted to move some of the animals. Spokeswoman Janet Jenkins says the animals are being well-looked after. “The sheep are in great condition. Everybody just understands that the ship and the sheep are prepped to do an eight-week plus journey to get to their final destination so eight days is nothing,” she said.