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Six New Outbreaks of Newcastle Disease in Pigeons

by 5m Editor
22 September 2011, at 1:35am

VICTORIA, AUSTRALIA - There have been six new outbreaks of Newcastle disease in pigeon flocks in the state.

The veterinary authority sent Follow Up report No. 1 dated 21 September to the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE).

The report describes outbreaks of avian paramyxovirus type 1 in six flocks of hobby pigeons in the state of Victoria, starting between 10 and 20 September.

According to the report, preliminary epidemiological analysis of the outbreaks points to disease spread by the movement of live hobby pigeons. Tracings have confirmed links between cases and a link to a pet shop. The rise in number of cases is due to tracing and laboratory follow-up on suspect premises.

Analysis of the nucleotide sequence of the cleavage site of the F gene of one isolate shows multiple amino acids (RRQKRF) consistent with virulent Newcastle disease virus. Preliminary advice from the Australian Animal Health Laboratory (AAHL) concerning the infectivity trial in domestic chickens that began on 12 September is that to date all birds remain clinically well. AAHL's work on the lineage of the virus is continuing.

The report adds an important note by the OIE Animal Health Information Department: According to Chapter 10.9 of the OIE Terrestrial Animal Health Code (2011), the notification of this outbreak does not change the Newcastle disease-free status of Australia and should not affect trade of poultry and their products since the birds involved in this outbreak do not fall within the OIE definition of poultry.

Further Reading

- Find out more information on Newcastle disease by clicking here.