HONG KONG - A spokesman for the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) has reminded members of the public not to bring live poultry and birds into Hong Kong without a valid health certificate or they might face prosecution.
Twenty-four poultry and birds without valid health certificates, including twenty ducklings, two scarlet minivets, a Chinese grosbeak and a house crow, were found in a private car bound for Hong Kong at Shenzhen Bay Control Point during an inspection by the Customs officers on 9 March.
The poultry and birds of unknown source were transported to Lok Ma Chau Spur Line Control Point.
After taking samples for avian influenza testing, the AFCD has disposed of all the poultry and birds. Follow-up investigations by the AFCD are underway.
Under the Public Health (Animals and Birds) Regulation (Cap 139A), any person who imports live birds or poultry without a valid health certificate issued by the veterinary authority in the country of export is liable to a fine of $25,000 and forfeiture of such animals.
In addition, a ban on backyard poultry has been in force since 2006.
The unauthorised keeping of five kinds of poultry - chickens, ducks, geese, pigeons and quails - is an offence with a maximum fine of $50,000. Repeat offenders are subject to a maximum fine of $100,000.
The spokesman said the AFCD will continue to work closely with the Customs and the Police to combat illegal importation of poultry and birds to minimise the risk of avian influenza outbreak brought by imported poultry and birds that had not gone through inspection and quarantine.ThePoultrySite News Desk