Culling of ducks ordered in India's Kerala following outbreak of bird flu-Xinhua

Culling of ducks ordered in India's Kerala following outbreak of bird flu

Source: Xinhua| 2024-04-18 19:05:45|Editor: huaxia

NEW DELHI, April 18 (Xinhua) -- Authorities have ordered the culling of domesticated ducks in the southern Indian state of Kerala following the outbreak of bird flu (Avian Influenza H5N1), officials said Thursday.

The culling will be carried out in Alappuzha district, about 154 km north of Thiruvananthapuram, the capital city of Kerala.

"A bird flu outbreak has been confirmed in ducks reared in Edathua Grama Panchayat and Cheruthana Grama Panchayat," an official said.

"Following the mass death of ducks, the animal husbandry department sent samples of the dead birds to the National Institute of High Security Animal Disease, Bhopal, for analyses, which tested positive for avian influenza."

According to the official, as per the protocol during a meeting chaired by the district collector, it was decided to initiate the process of culling domestic birds within a radius of 1 km from the hotspot to contain the spread of the disease.

Officials said over 3,000 ducks were lost to the outbreak since April 12.

The district administration has issued an order banning the movement of poultry birds to and from the affected spots.

A preliminary assessment available with the animal husbandry department said over 21,000 birds, mostly ducks, will have to be culled as part of the containment measures.

Bird flu is a highly infectious and severe respiratory disease in birds caused by the H5N1 influenza virus, which can occasionally infect humans as well.