Bird flu cull begins in Bengal

22-09-2011 | | |

Bengal, in the northeast region of the Indian Subcontinent has been struck by bird flu prompting a culling of poultry birds across 13 villages, The Time of India is reporting.

“Around 51,000 hens and ducks will be culled within a 3-km radius of the affected zone,” said A K Agarwal, secretary of the ARD department. In addition to culling, surveillance will continue within a 10-km radius of the affected area.

On September 14, unnatural deaths of 849 fowls on a single day were reported to the local animal resources development wing. The next day, samples were sent for test to the Belgachhia laboratory, where it was confirmed to be bird flu. To re-confirm the tests, samples were sent again to Bhopal’s High Security Animal Disease Laboratory (HSADL) where it tested positive for the H5 strain of avian influenza.

Both the Centre and the state issued notifications, declaring the epidemic as bird flu and culling was ordered. Culling started across the five affected panchayat areas and as Bangladesh falls within the 3km culling zone, discussions have taken place so that a similar exercise is conducted over this area as well.