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The Latest: Bali volcano exhibiting signs of unrest

Mount Agung is seen at sunrise from an observation point which is about 12 kilometer (7.4 miles) away from the volcano in Karangasem, Bali, Indonesia, Thursday, Sept. 28, 2017. The exodus from the menacing volcano on the Indonesian tourist island is nearing 100,000 people, a disaster official said Wednesday, as hundreds of tremors from the mountain are recorded daily. (AP Photo/Firdia Lisnawati)

BALI, Indonesia (AP) — The Latest on an active volcano on Indonesia’s tourist island of Bali (all times local):

9:30 a.m.

A Bali island volcano is exhibiting signs of unrest with a continued high chance of eruption.

The observation post for Mount Agung witnessed the volcano emitting a small plume most likely of water vapor after daybreak Friday. But there was no ash cloud.

Hundreds of tremors have shaken the mountain daily since the volcanic activity began increasing last week. Scientists have said the activity suggests magma is moving below the surface and may erupt, but they can’t say when or how severe the eruption might be.

Authorities have declared an area up to 12 kilometers from the crater off-limits. The more than 130,000 people who have fled are staying in community centers or other shelters in safer areas of the island.

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3:55 p.m.

Warnings that Bali’s volcano will erupt have sparked an exodus of people and another challenge: what to do with thousands of cows left behind by villagers.

National Disaster Mitigation Agency estimates 30,000 head of cattle are in the danger zone around Mount Agung. About a third, or 10,000 cows, have either been sold by those fleeing or taken with them.

Villager Wayan Merta, who lived just 6 kilometers (4 miles) from the crater, said he sold his family’s cattle “because we thought it was better than leaving them there for nothing.”

Local animal husbandry officials are attempting to evacuate the rest but it’s slow going partly because of the limited number of trucks available and have removed only about 1,400 so far.

They also need a huge amount of feed: about 1,200 tons of dry feed a month on top of grazing.

 

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