Avian influenza spreads to tenth Australian poultry farm

The new infection is within an already-set-up quarantine zone
calendar icon 25 June 2024
clock icon 1 minute read

A highly pathogenic strain of avian influenza has spread to an eighth poultry farm near Melbourne, Reuters reported, citing the government of Australia's Victoria state on Tuesday, taking the total number of infected facilities in the country to 10.

Australia is dealing with three parallel outbreaks of bird flu, two near Melbourne and one near Sydney. Each involves a different strain of the virus, none of which is the H5N1 type that has spread through bird and mammal populations and even to humans around the world.

Victorian authorities said the new infection was within a quarantine zone already set up around affected farms and was therefore not unexpected.

The flu has mostly hit egg farms. Around 1.5 million birds have been or will be killed to control the spread of the virus. There is so far no shortage of eggs in stores.

Bird flu spreads to farmed animals from wild birds. The 2024 infections are the tenth outbreak in Australia since 1976. Each was contained and eradicated, according to the government.

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