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Assessing the Risk of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza H5N1 Transmission through Poultry Movements in Bali, Indonesia

20 January 2014, at 12:00am

An international group of researchers has found that live poultry movements play in transmitting the H5N1 avian flu virus in Indonesia, and that a variety of control measures is necessary to reduce disease spread.

Indonesia continues to report the highest number of human and poultry cases of highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1, according to Sharon Roche of the University of Sydney in Australia.

In a paper published online in Preventative Veterinary Medicine, she and co-authors from Massey University in New Zealand, the Australian Department of Agriculture and Indonesia's Ministry of Agriculture report that the disease is considered to be endemic on the island of Bali.

Live bird markets are integral in the poultry supply chain on Bali and are important, nutritionally and culturally, for the rural and urban human populations. Due to the lack of biosecurity practised along the supply chain from producer to live bird markets, there is a need to understand the risks associated with the spread of H5N1 through live bird movements for effective control.

Resources to control H5N1 in Indonesia are very limited and cost-effective strategies are needed.

The researchers assessed the probability a live bird market is infected through live poultry movements and assessed the effects of implementing two simple and low-cost control measures on this risk.

They say their results suggest there is a high risk a live bird market is infected (0.78), and risk mitigation strategies such as detecting and removing infected poultry from markets reduce this risk somewhat (range 0.67-0.76).

Roche and co-authors conclude their study demonstrates the key role live poultry movements play in transmitting H5N1 and the need to implement a variety of control measures to reduce disease spread.


Roche S.E., N. Cogger, M.G. Garner, A.A.G. Putra and J-A.L.M.L. Toribio. 2013. Assessing the risk of highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1 transmission through poultry movements in Bali, Indonesia. Preventive Veterinary Medicine. Available online 16 December 2013.

Further Reading

You can view the full report (fee payable) by clicking here.
You can visit the Avian Flu page by clicking here.

January 2014

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