Avian flu in Vechta

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Avian flu: 11,000 animals in the Vechta district must be killed

A mild form of bird flu has been detected in turkeys in the district of Vechta, according to the current announcement by the Lower Saxony Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection. The H7 avian influenza virus was identified during the company's own checks on Wednesday evening, the official announcement. After reporting the detection of the pathogen, the district of Vechta immediately shut down operations and ordered the official investigation of further samples. This has now confirmed the infection with the bird flu pathogen, the Lower Saxony Ministry of Agriculture reported on Wednesday.

According to the authorities, due to the risk of spreading the bird flu pathogens, around 11,000 animals in the affected farm must "be killed in accordance with animal welfare requirements." Landkreis Emsland all the necessary measures were taken immediately, ”explained the Lower Saxony Ministry of Agriculture. A restricted area of ​​one kilometer was established around the farm, in which poultry may not be transported. The two other poultry farms, which are located in the restricted area of ​​the Vechta district, are also affected by the transport ban. However, the hobby poultry farming with two ducks and the rearing house for pullets with a capacity of around 17,000 livestock do not have to kill their animals. While this measure is also intended for the surrounding farms in the detection of severe bird flu, poultry farmers may be spared killing their animals with the mild variant of bird flu.

Preventing the spread of bird flu The authorities take samples from all poultry farms within the restricted area in order to detect possible infections. In the farm directly affected, the animals are thoroughly cleaned and disinfected after the animals have been killed. After 21 days, the all-clear can be given without any pathogen detection and all measures can be canceled. To determine the route of infection, the authorities also carry out intensive epidemiological investigations. Even if it is currently only one case in the district of Vechta, the authorities take the bird flu detection very seriously and the veterinary office has taken all measures with great care to prevent the virus from spreading, reports the Lower Saxony Ministry of Agriculture. For example, the surrounding counties were informed directly and the animal epidemic notification for nationwide information to the veterinary authorities was discontinued.

No threat to humans Although avian flu can be dangerous for poultry populations, the pathogens found in Vechta are not a threat to humans. The situation is different for the human-pathogenic variant of bird flu (H7N9), which is currently rampant in China. This also causes severe bird flu symptoms in humans, such as high fever and respiratory infections. Many of those affected had pneumonia and around a quarter of the demonstrably infected people did not survive the infection. The bird flu variant found in Vechta is only so threatening for the poultry populations. The farms in the Osnabrück district that were recently affected by the mild bird flu have since been released again, as the bird flu there has gone out, according to the latest announcement from the Lower Saxony Ministry of Agriculture. (fp)

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