France is to cull around 600,000 poultry birds as it tries to contain an avian influenza virus that is spreading among duck flocks in the southwest of the country, the farm ministry said on Tuesday.
A highly contagious and deadly form of avian influenza is spreading rapidly in Europe, putting the poultry industry on alert with previous outbreaks in mind that saw tens of millions of birds culled and significant economic losses.
Chile has detected avian influenza H7 at a turkey production plant run by poultry producer Agrosuper in the country's central Valparaiso region. All affected birds (350,000) will be culled. No data regarding N type were given.
Researchers have found a new type of avian influenza virus in a group of Adélie penguins (pygoscelies adeliae) from Antarctica. Aeron Hurt, PhD, a senior research scientist at the WHO Collaborating Centre for Reference and Research on Influenza in Melbourne, Australia, said that this is the first time that a distinct, live flu virus has been found in these birds.
Chinese scientists have confirmed for the first time that a new strain of bird flu that has killed 23 people in China has been transmitted to humans from chickens. In a study published online in the Lancet medical journal, the scientists echoed previous statements from the World Health Organization (WHO) and Chinese officials that there is as yet no evidence of human-to-human transmission of this virus.
Chinese capital Beijing reported on Saturday its first case of a new strain of bird flu, state news agency Xinhua said, the first time it has been found in a human outside of eastern China.
FAO urged heightened readiness and surveillance against a possible major resurgence of the H5N1 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza amid signs that a mutant strain of the deadly Bird Flu virus is spreading in Asia and beyond, with unpredictable risks to human health.