Officials Say Bird Deaths in NE China Not Bird Flu

CHINA - Officials say that bird deaths in eastern China are not from avian influenza but from a respiratory syndrome caused by cold winter weather.
calendar icon 22 December 2008
clock icon 3 minute read

The recent tide of poultry death in two cites in east China's Jiangsu Province was not from the infection of bird flu, said an agricultural official in Beijing on 19 December, according to official sources.

The provincial agriculture and forest bureau held a press conference on Friday to clarify wrong reports by some media saying sample chickens, which were tested positive of mutant H5N1 virus from Dongtai City and its neighboring Hai'an County were among the dead chickens.

"The sample chickens for the test were living ones, which did not show symptoms of sickness," said Wu Peiliang, head of the bureau.

He said the provincial animal disease prevention and control center has found the tide of chicken death was resulted from a respiratory syndrome, which was mainly caused by low temperature.

The bureau did not give the figure on dead chickens.

Mr Wu said that the mutant H5N1 virus found in the two cities were similar to the one found on sample chickens in north China's Shanxi Province in 2006. China has developed effective vaccines to fight the virus.

"The vaccine has been sent to poultry farmers for free. The vaccination work will be finished by Saturday," he said.

A total of 377,000 birds have been killed after the bird flu virus was found in the province, the agriculture ministry said on Tuesday. But no outbreak of the bird flu was reported in the two areas and their nearby regions, the ministry said.

Further Reading

- You can visit the Avian Flu page by clicking here.
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