A particularly contagious strain of avian influenza has required drastic measures in the Netherlands.
Dutch authorities have slaughtered some 190,000 chickens after a particularly contagious strain of bird flu appeared in at least two poultry farms, the agriculture ministry said on Sunday.
Health workers slaughtered around 100,000 hens in a farm in Hekendorp, not far from Gouda (west), and 90,000 chicks in a farm in Witmarsum, in Friesland (north). In both cases, authorities suspected “a highly contagious strain of the H5 variant,” the ministry said in a statement.
No other poultry farm is located within a one-kilometer radius of these farms, he added. “Both farms have been cleaned to prevent the spread of the disease,” the ministry said.
Avian flu, spread mainly through migratory birds, has been detected on several farms in the Netherlands since October.
On October 23, Dutch Agriculture Minister Carola Schouten imposed preventive containment inside the buildings of all commercial poultry farms after the discovery of two dead swans carrying a highly contagious form of H5N8 avian influenza.
Not dangerous for humans
Following the outbreak of outbreaks in Russia and Kazakhstan this summer, the bird flu epizootic, which is not dangerous to humans, has recently spread to Western Europe, where alert levels have been identified.
In France, a second case of avian flu was detected Thursday in a pet store located in Yvelines (Paris region), three days after the announcement of a first outbreak in Haute-Corse. Sweden, Ireland and the United Kingdom are also affected.
Posted today at 12:02