Bird Flu outbreak reported in Kerala

Bird Flu outbreak reported in Kerala

Thousands of ducks in Kerala have been infected with the Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) H5N1, the district administration confirmed.

The reports of infection in ducks from Edathua and Cheruthana in Kuttanad region have confirmed the presence of the disease, said officials of the Alappuzha district collectorate. However, they refused to share further details.

Abraham Ouseph from Edathua lost 3,000 of his 7,500 ducks in a week, according to a report in the newspaper The Hindu. Raghunathan Chirayil and Devarajan T from the same district also lost 238 and 171 birds, respectively. 

Many birds infected by HPAI show nervousness, lack of coordination and movements, tremors, gasping for air, swelling and redness around neck, head and eyes. 

The reports of mass infections started coming in around April 12 and the carcass were immediately sent to the National Institute of High-Security Animal Disease, Bhopal, which confirmed the tests to be positive on April 17. 

The animal husbandry department has initiated measures to contain the disease.

About 21,537 birds, a majority of them ducks, will be killed within a kilometre radius from the affected areas, the official said. 

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