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Germany culls thousands of chickens after bird flu outbreak on farm

Germany has ordered the culling of nearly 29,000 chickens after veterinary authorities identified bird flu cases on a farm.

4 December 2020, at 9:10am

Reuters reports that veterinary officials identified an outbreak of H5N8 avian influenza on 3 December in a farm in the eastern area of Mecklenburgische Seenplatte.

The 29,000 chickens are now being slaughtered and a 10-kilometre observation area is being set up covering 482 nearby farms with about 644,000 poultry, the Mecklenburgische Seenplatte local government authority added.

A series of outbreaks of bird flu have been reported in Europe in recent weeks, with wild birds suspected to be spreading the illness.

The disease has been found in countries including France, the Netherlands, Germany, Britain, Belgium, Denmark, Ireland, Sweden and Poland, after severely hitting Russia, Kazakhstan and Israel.

Some 11 other farms in Germany have suffered outbreaks.

About 10,500 turkeys were slaughtered after H5N8 was found at a farm in northern England, British authorities said on 29 November.

Risk to humans from the disease is considered low, but past outbreaks among farm birds have needed extensive slaughtering programmes to contain.

Read more about this story here.