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Wild Bird Carcasses Tested Positive for H5N1

by 5m Editor
16 February 2009, at 7:13am

HONG KONG - The carcasses of a goose and two ducks found on a beach have tested positive for the H5N1 subtype of the highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) virus.

USDA Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) reports that one dead goose and two dead ducks found on a beach in an outlying island of Hong Kong in late January 2009 have been confirmed to be H5N1 positive after a series of laboratory tests. They were highly decomposed when found.

There were no poultry farms within three kilometres of where the carcasses were found and there was no evidence of any backyard poultry being kept in the area.

The Hong Kong government (HKG) is looking into different possibilities of why the goose and duck carcasses were found, including whether they had been washed ashore from China. Between 1 and 5 February 2009, 20 more bird carcasses of birds were found in various areas of Hong Kong.

Based on preliminary tests for the H5 virus, seven carcasses are suspected to be positive for the H5 virus and another seven have tested negative, and test results of others for the remainder are not yet available.

Meanwhile, the Hong Kong government has alerted poultry farmers to strengthen precautionary and biosecurity measures against avian influenza.

There have been no reports of any abnormal mortality or symptoms of avian influenza among chicken flocks in local poultry farms. Pet bird shop owners, license holders of pet poultry and pigeons have also been reminded to take proper precautions.

Further Reading

- You can view the full report by clicking here.

Further Reading

- You can visit the Avian Flu page by clicking here.