FRANCE - The total number of outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian influenza in France now stands at thirty, double the total of two days ago, as more cases continue to be confirmed.
The worst affected region in the latest announcement is Landes, which has reported nine new outbreaks in the past two days.
On 14 December three new outbreaks were found in poultry going to slaughter in the communes of Saint Etienne d'Orthe (restricted area Josse) and Bergouey Monsegur (restricted area Doazit).
The affected communities where outbreaks were found on 15 December were Momuy, Saint-Cricq-Chalosse, Montaut, Gaujacq, Serreslous-et-Arribans and Hauriet.
In Dordogne, two outbreaks were reported in Campagnac-les-Quercy in 14 December. Then on 15 December, another outbreak was identified in poultry heading to slaughter in Saint Armand de Coly.
In Pyrénées Atlantiques, one outbreak was declared on 15 December in Uzan in 1240 breeding ducks.
In Gers, two highly pathogenic H5 outbreaks have been found in a duck farm in Panjas, and a breeding flock of 2000 ducks and guinea fowls in Mirande.
The authorities are still trying to find out the exact strains involved in the outbreaks reported above.
The outbreaks remain confined to the south of France, but the proximity of the area to Spain means that Spanish producers have growing concerns, as well as French producers. The Spanish producers began selling eggs to the US earlier this year following a shortage due to the severe avian flu outbreaks there, so an avian flu outbreak in Spain would likely threaten this lucrative new export avenue.