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Calls for Vigilance as New Bird Flu Outbreaks Mark Start of Season in EU

09 November 2016

EU - The EU's Commission is calling for vigilance and stepping up of biosecurity measures on farms following recent detections of avian influenza, writes The Poultry Site's Editor Alice Mitchell.

Following confirmation on 4 November of the highly pathogenic avian influenza of subtype H5N8 on a turkey fattening farm in Tótkomlós, Békés County, the Hungarian authorities immediately applied control measures as laid down in EU legislation.

Hungary's report to the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) says over 10,000 turkeys have died or been destroyed as a result of the outbreak. This outbreak is caused by the same strain of Asian origin detected in a mute swan in the same area the week before.

This and other outbreaks throughout the EU mark the seasonal circulation of avian influenza viruses, the Commission said. The protective measures to respond to the outbreak for the affected areas were reviewed and supported at the meeting of the Standing Committee on Plants, Animals, Food and Feed (PAFF) on Monday 7 November.

In Germany, avian influenza subtype H5N8 has been detected in dead wild birds in Schleswig-Holstein. Since the weekend more than 100 dead water birds had been found on the Great Plön Lake and smaller lakes in the area. Measures such as restricted areas were implemented straight away.

"The active disease in wild birds is a worrying finding and is cause for extremely high vigilance. We need to strengthen the protection of poultry in the country against a possible entry of the virus, in close coordination with the local veterinary authorities," said Agriculture Minister Robert Habeck.

He reminded poultry keepers that entire flocks will have to be slaughtered if the disease is found, and so biosecurity precautions must be followed meticulously.

The German news release reported that in Poland more than 70 wilds and gulls have also been found dead recently. The highly pathogenic influenza A subtype H5N8 was detected there. The concurrent report from Poland to the OIE shows the outbreak took place in Zachodnio-Pomorskie region, on the border with Germany.

Alice Mitchell

 Alice Mitchell
 ThePoultrySite's Editor

 

 




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