Sweeping Heat Wave Kills Over 830,000 Farm Animals In S. Korea

The current heat wave sweeping South Korea has claimed hundreds of thousands of livestock, the government said on Wednesday.

Over 830,000 farm animals, including 786,000 chickens, have perished in the heat wave that continued to scorch the country for the past three weeks, according to the Ministry of Food, Agriculture, Forestry & Fisheries. The dead animals include 41,000 ducks and over 300 pigs. Such damages are often caused by power outages that can halt the ventilation and cooling systems at the farms, South Korean media reports said.

South Korea was forced to issue power shortage warnings for two consecutive days in the current week as the sweltering weather pushed up its energy consumption to new highs, driving down its electricity levels to what officials called "dangerous levels" of less than three million kilowatts.

"The number of animals killed may actually be greater, pending on a more thorough survey," the Yonhap news agency quoted a Ministry official as saying. The country is also experiencing its longest streak of the so-called tropical nights, where overnight temperatures stay above 25 C.

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