Seven states, namely Kerala, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh, confirmed the bird flu outbreak within their boundaries Sunday while test results are yet to be known for Delhi and Maharashtra. The Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying has issued advisories to the affected states to avoid further spread of disease.
Control and containment have been completed in both Alappuzha and Kottayam districts. Also, news agency PTI reported that post operational surveillance programme guidelines have been issued to the state.
Meanwhile, the central teams formed for monitoring the situation in the affected areas of the country are visiting the affected sites. The Centre has asked states to build awareness among the public and avoid the spread of misinformation regarding avian influenza.
“States/Union Territories have been requested to increase surveillance around water bodies, live bird markets, zoos, poultry farms, etc., proper disposal of carcass, and strengthening of bio-security in poultry farms,” the statement said.
Here is a state-wise status of the bird flu outbreak in the country:
Over 400 birds found dead in Rajasthan amid avian influenza outbreak
Amid an outbreak of bird flu, over 400 birds, mostly crows, were found dead in different parts of Rajasthan on Sunday, officials said. With the 428 fresh deaths, the number of birds that have died in the past few days reached 2,950 in the state.
So far, 51 samples of dead birds from 13 districts have been found positive for bird flu. Of the 428 birds which were reported dead on Sunday, 326 were crows, 18 peacocks, 34 pigeons and 50 others.
Most of the birds which have died in the state till Saturday are crows (2,289), followed by peacocks (170) and pigeons (156)
Reduced demand for chicken in Kerala, Karnataka
With bird flu reports making headlines across the country, chicken shop owners in Thiruvananthapuram told ANI that their business has been hit hard. The price of mutton has climbed up to Rs 800 per kilogram.
Animal Husbandry Minister K Raju had stated Wednesday that spread of bird flu in the state is due to migratory birds and 37,654 birds have been culled in Alappuzha and 7,229 birds in Kottayam districts so far.
“The government will provide Rs200 each to owners of birds older than 2 months that either died of the disease or were culled. For those birds less than one-month-old, Rs 100 each will be provided to farmers. Further needs of the farmers will be considered later,” he added.
The Animal Husbandry Department in Karnataka has issued a general alert to all district collectors and put Dakshina Kannada, Mysuru, Madikeri and Udupi on high alert.
“There is no case of bird flu in Karnataka,” state health minister Dr K Sudhakar said.
Fully prepared to tackle bird flu, says Gujarat CM Vijay Rupani
Amid bird flu scare, dozens of birds were found dead in different part of Gujarat, keeping health and animal husbandry department staff busy collecting samples for tests, officials said on Sunday.
Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani has said that the state government was fully prepared to deal with bird flu. He said the two departments were working over the past four days to ensure there is no spread of bird flu in the state.
Junagadh animal husbandry department deputy director SN Vaghasiya said 18 hens were found dead in a poultry farm in Chikhli village in Gir Somnath district in the last nine days.
“Samples have been sent for testing. However, there have been no bird deaths in the vicinity of this farm. For now, I don’t see the possibility of bird flu,” he said.
Maharashtra: 180 birds die in 2 days, alert zone around Latur village
Amid the bird flu scare in several states, an “alert zone” was declared in a 10-kilometre radius around Ahmedpur area in Latur in Maharashtra after 180 birds, including 128 hens, were found dead over the past couple of days, an official said on Sunday. The cause of death is yet unknown and the alert zone has been marked as a precautionary measure around Kendrewadi village, some 265 kilometres from here, by Latur Collector Prithviraj BP, he said.
As per a Latur district administration release, the alert zone norms mandate that no vehicle will enter or leave the place, and transportation of poultry, birds, animals, feed, manure etc. will be prohibited.
“A total of 128 hens were found dead in the village in Saturday and 52 birds were found dead on Sunday. Samples from all of them have been sent to Pune for testing. Reports are awaited,” Prasad Kulkarni, Ahmedpur tehsildar told PTI. He said a team of officials who visited the area found the place where these birds died “overcrowded”.
Madhya Pradesh: Peacocks found dead in Jhabua
Five peacocks were found dead in a village field in Madhya Pradesh’s Jhabua district, officials told PTI. Samples from the carcasses, found in Madrani, some 55 kilometres from the district headquarters, have been sent for examination and post mortem will also be conducted, Divisional Forest Officer ML Harit said.
Dr Wilson Dawar, an official in the state animal husbandry department said the examination report should be available in three to four days. Over the past few days, bird flu cases have been found in 13 Madhya Pradesh districts, while around 1,100 crows and other birds have been found dead across 27 districts since the first detection last month, a government official told PTI.
Uttar Pradesh: Preventive measures in place at Lucknow zoo, birds being monitored
Following the confirmation of bird flu in samples collected from the Kanpur zoo, the Nawab Wajid Ali Shah Zoological Garden in Lucknow is opting for preventive measures and keeping a close watch on the birds kept in the bird enclosure, officials said on Sunday.
“No case (of bird flu) has been reported here, yet we are taking all the preventive measures. The virus spreads from the excreta of migratory birds and our effort is to ensure that it does not come here,” zoo Director RK Singh said. Bottles containing a solution of potassium permanganate have been kept at the gates of the zoo so that the visitors enter the premises disinfected, he said.
“We are maintaining a watch on the birds’ enclosure. If any unusual behaviour is seen in any bird, it will be taken to the isolation ward,” Singh added.
In Bareilly, arrangements to provide drinking water to migratory birds have been shut and reflectors are being installed at the Central Avian Research Institute (CARI).
“In order to ensure that migratory birds do not enter the CARI campus through the aerial route, reflectors are being installed on a war footing. The lower branches of the trees on the roadside have been cut, so that the birds do not drop their excreta on the road,” Acting Director of the institute Sanjeev Kumar said. The Centre on Saturday said the outbreak of bird flu or avian influenza has been reported in Uttar Pradesh, taking the number of affected states in the country to seven.
Over 200 migratory birds found dead in Himachal Pradesh
Carcasses of 215 migratory birds were found in Pong Dam Wildlife Sanctuary in Himachal Pradesh’s Kangra district on Sunday, taking the total number of such birds suspected to have died of avian influenza to 4,235, officials said.
Each day, hundreds of migratory birds have been found dead in the lake area since December 29. Last Monday, the samples tested positive for H5N1, they said. Also, for the fourth day in a row, a large number of dead poultry birds were found dumped by the side of the Chandigarh-Shimla highway in Solan district. The remains of the birds were buried according to safety protocol and their samples sent to a disease diagnostic laboratory in Jalandhar.
Earlier, dead chicken were found dumped twice near Chakki Mor and once at Barog bypass near the district headquarters.