Bird flu detected in Eastern Cape

The Eastern Cape department of Rural Development and Agrarian Reform has confirmed the presence of Bird flu in the province.

In a statement, the department said they had detected the “highly pathogenic Avian Influenza in some of the Sovereign Foods’ farms in Uitenhage, which houses huge numbers of chickens”.

All the birds in the farms where the highly pathogenic Avian Influenza was reported were being treated as infected by the virus, said the statement.

This means that the entire bird populations on the farms will be culled to avoid the spread of the disease and so that the farms can be disinfected. 

 “The farms, which are 3 kilometers radius from each other, as well as farms within the 30-kilometer radius from the main source, will be quarantined and will be under strict veterinary surveillance to minimise any possible spread of the highly pathogenic Avian Influenza to other farms,” said the department’s Veterinary Services Chief Director Dr Lubabalo Mrwebi.

Some of the chickens from the affected farms – that died as a result of bird flu – were taken to a disposal site under veterinary supervision, said Mrwebi.

He said: “The department would like to call on poultry farms to contact local state veterinary services if they notice high mortality of their chickens immediately”.

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