Halldór Runólfsson, senior veterinarian at the Icelandic Food and Veterinary Authority, urges farmers near the eruption zone in south Iceland to be mindful of ash fall, which could poison their livestock.
The photo is not directly related to the story. Copyright: Icelandic Photo Agency.
They should place white plates on their pastures to see whether they get tinted by ash from the eruption in Eyjafjallajökull, he advised.
“What I have asked farmers to do today is to make their own observations,” Runólfsson told visir.is.
When the eruption began last night, farmers were concerned that it might impact animals close to the eruption zone. However, Runólfsson said farmers were relieved after it turned out that this was a small eruption and that it has neither produced much ash nor flooding.
Yet, the veterinarian encourages farmers to keep their animals inside if possible. “The drinking water must be monitored closely in the cases of horses that are in pasture,” Runólfsson recommended. Horses that are kept outside should also be given hay so they won’t have to feed from the grass in the pasture.
Otherwise, Runólfsson is not concerned about the situation, considering that not much ash has fallen. Also, this is a good time for an eruption, he reasoned, as livestock is usually kept inside at this time of year.