At least 5,932 bird flu infected fowls were culled in Jhenidah and Pabna on Monday and yesterday as more reports pour in of the spread of the infection.
When the fowls started dying at the farm, samples of the dead poultry were sent first to Manikganj Livestock Regional Centre and later to the Savar centre. On confirmation of the bird flu infection the local administration arranged the culling of the fowl.
Earlier on Sunday night 1500 fowls were killed at a poultry farm at Moheshpur upazila.Over 1,700 bird flu infected chickens have been culled in two poultry farms and some residences of Ishwardi upazila in Pabna in the early hours yesterday,reports our correspondent in Pabna.
The infection was first detected at one Manjur Rahman Shahin’s poultry farm on Sunday. Ishwardi upazila livestock office collected samples of chicken dying here to Joypurhat and Savar livestock research centres, which confirmed the presence of bird flu virus.Local administration then arranged the culling.
Meanwhile our Rajshahi correspondent reports that hundreds of crows have been dying in the city without any apparent cause.
About a hundred crows were found dead just outside the Rajshahi Medical College Hospital (RMCH) compound on Sunday. Locals fear that the birds might have died of bird flu infection.
Dhaka Zoo authorities have announced red alert inside the facility in an effort to control any possible bird flu infestation among its precious bird collection.
“Bio-security measures have been beefed up. Birdcages are being sprayed with disinfectant twice a day. Spraying is being done in the entire zoo,”offificial said. “A footbath has been set up at the zoo entrance containing antiseptic. Every visitor has to step in it before entering,” he also added.
Biddyut Kumar Das, scientific officer for Bangladesh’s livestock department, said nearly 50,000 birds were slaughtered on Feb 3, the biggest one-day cull since the virus first surfaced in the country in February 2007, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported today. The birds were slaughtered after officials detected the virus at 10 farms in Kushtia district near Dhaka, the capital, the AFP report said.
Only 10 days after chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee sought more supply of chicken to Kolkata from areas unaffected by bird flu, the state has clamped a blanket ban on sale and transport of poultry products all over Bengal as a precaution against possible human infection. Government reports on Tuesday show that culling continued in parts of South and North 24 Parganas, Howrah, Hooghly and other districts recently afflicted with the virus.
In West Bengal, 130 birds were found dead in the districts of Murshidabad, South 24-Parganas and North 24-Parganas, taking the toll of birds from avian influenza to 132,883.
Health minister Surjya Kanta Mishra and animal resources department minister Anisur Rahman said the ‘indefinite suspension’ of poultry sale was necessary to prevent transmission of bird flu. “We will continue reviewing the situation and lift the suspension order whenever possible,” they said at a news conference.
Defending the ban, government sources said the flu has certainly spread to other districts. It is a matter of time an alert is sounded in these districts as samples from here have already been sent to Bhopal for testing. Sources also said the ban is necessary because district administrations have not been able to prevent the sale of poultry in affected areas. Added to this is pressure from the Union ministry of Agriculture which is not happy the way the state has handled the crisis.
In the wake of the outbreak of bird flu in a few states recently, officials of the animal husbandry department have started destroying the truck loads of eggs that had come in other states. Though poultry produce from five states has been banned from entering into the state, the department has claimed that the state has sufficient poultry produce to meet its own demand.
The department has recently decided to ban poultry, eggs and feed that comes from Orrisa, Assam, West Bengal, Jharkhand and Bihar. Though nearly 40 per cent of the supply to Maharashtra is from Andhra Pradesh, the department has also has sought the government’s permission to include it in the list of banned states, too.
Pakistan Rangers spokesman Major Asad told that the Rangers poultry farm was shut down and the poultry stock culled immediately after the presence of the H5N1 virus was reported. He said that nine workers have been isolated and are under the strict monitoring under a team of doctors from the Sindh Health Department. All the workers are in good health and show no sign of bird flu.
Sindh provincial surveillance officer for avian influenza Dr Aslam Jalali also told that 217 people worldwide have died of bird flu, including 137 in Malaysia.
Following confirmation of presence of the deadly H5N1 bird flu virus in a couple of Karachi’s poultry farms last week, the price of chicken meat has plunged sharply during the last few days.Compared to 2004’s outbreak of avian virus, when similar situation had crippled the industry for long duration of the time, the new emerging situation is more precarious in view of the rising cost of chicken production over the period of time.
Health authorities in Pakistan are doing tests on 12 workers from a farm where the deadly H5N1 bird flu virus was detected in poultry, a Health Ministry spokesman said yesterday.
Authorities confirmed on Monday an outbreak of the H5N1 strain of bird flu at a poultry farm on the outskirts of Karachi, the second case in four days in the country’s biggest city.
Meanwhile, authorities in Turkey confirmed a new H5 outbreak in poultry in the northwestern part of the country, the Anatolia news agency reported today, according to AFP.
The outbreak occurred in a village in Sakarya province, according to a statement released to Anatolia by the governor’s office, the AFP report said. Further tests are underway to determine if the virus is the highly pathogenic strain.
The country reported its first H5N1 outbreak of 2008 on Jan 22, according to a report from the OIE. That outbreak hit backyard poultry at a village on the Black Sea coast in the country’s northwestern province of Zonguldak.
Animal health officials in Bulgaria reported a highly pathogenic H7 influenza virus in a mallard duck shot by a hunter in Shumen province in the country’s northeast, according to a Feb 1 report from the OIE.
The communication strategy needed to adopt better surveillance mechanisms and form special teams for rapid response in rural areas, instead of spending large amounts of money on national media campaigns.
So far, the most important preventive measures to combat the spread of the avian flu virus have included banning the raising of birds in towns and the transportation of poultry without authorisation between provinces, and massive inoculation campaigns.
Deploying to an outbreak site as soon as a new case is detected and immediately start awareness mobilisation about the bird flu virus in the affected zone.
Sindh ministry of health spokesman and deputy secretary health Dr shakeel malik advised people for cooking chicken at temperatures of 80C to 100C eradicates the bird flu virus and eliminates any risk of contracting the disease. However, chicken tikka and other forms of barbecue may not be safe because the chicken is not always cooked or grilled to the required temperature and is sometimes left raw around the bone-joints. Avoid eating half-fried eggs or eggs with cracked shells. Eating omelets and fully boiled eggs is safe.
Source: The Commercial Times