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More than 1,000 bird deaths were reported; Center Issues Notices on Trials and Selection Operations | India News


NEW DELHI: Fresh bird deaths, including more than 900 from Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan, were reported Tuesday amid cases of avian influenza in 10 states and Union territories.
The Center said it has issued notices on testing and maintaining a sufficient stock of PPE equipment for slaughter operations.
In Uttarakhand, where nearly 300 birds, mostly crows, have died in recent days, a high alert was issued after samples tested positive for influenza, while in Maharashtra, a culling exercise was ordered in parts of the district of Latur.
As of Monday, an outbreak of bird flu was confirmed in Delhi, Maharashtra, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Kerala, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana and Gujarat.
“As of January 12, 2021, additional cases of avian influenza (H5N8) have been confirmed among dead crows at HCL-Khetri Nagar in the Jhunjhunu district of Rajasthan,” the Ministry of Fisheries, Livestock and Dairy said in a statement.
The H5N1 strain of avian influenza has also been confirmed in dead crows and a pelican in the Kanpur Zoo in Uttar Pradesh, as well as in dead crows in the village of Jagnoli and Fatehpur in the Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh.
Confirmation of H5N1 in poultry samples from the Jhabua district of Madhya Pradesh was received Tuesday from the National Institute for Highly Safe Animal Diseases (NIHSAD) in Bhopal, it said.
“The Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairy has issued an advisory on testing protocols to states, encouraging them to conduct state-level examinations to ensure adequate biosecurity facilities,” the statement said.
The ministry said states have been advised to keep a sufficient stock of personal protective equipment (PPE) and accessories necessary for slaughter operations.
Reports of more than 50 bird deaths were received at a helpline from the Delhi government’s animal husbandry unit and 18 samples were sent from different parts of the city for avian flu testing, authorities said.
The report of about 100 samples is yet to come, they said.
Testing of samples from crows and ducks confirmed cases of bird flu in the national capital on Monday, prompting the city government to impose a ban on the sale of processed and packaged chicken brought in from outside the city.
“The report of around 100 samples is still expected,” said Dr. Rakesh Singh from the Development Department.
Teams from the department visited many parks and bodies of water in Raj Ghat, Bhalswa and Hauz Khas to collect samples of dead birds and droppings on Tuesday, they said.
Himachal Pradesh
Carcasses of 280 more migratory waterfowl of various species were found at the Pong Dam Lake Wildlife Sanctuary in Himachal Pradesh’s Kangra district, authorities said.
With this, the death toll of migratory birds in the mountainous state has risen to 4,637 and some samples taken from the lake area tested positive for flu last week.
Of the newly found bodies, 150 were old deaths, authorities said, adding that samples had been sent for analysis.
The number of dead birds in Rajasthan rose to 3,947 with 626 deaths, amid cases of avian influenza in 16 districts, according to a report.
Jaipur has reported the highest number of deaths with 686 birds followed by 433 birds in Jhalawar.
In Jharkhand, large numbers of crows, mynas and herons were found dead in a village in Dumka district, authorities said.
Between 40 and 50 birds were found dead in Pokharia village on Monday, said Awadhesh Kumar Singh, the district’s animal husbandry officer.
Samples were collected and sent to Ranchi for examination, he said, adding that test reports would confirm whether it is bird flu or if there was some other reason for the deaths.
The administration in the Latur district of Maharashtra ordered the slaughter of birds in the villages of Kendrewadi and Sukni after samples collected from these areas tested positive for bird flu.
The Latur district harvester Pruthviraj BP has ordered the slaughter of birds within a radius of one kilometer from where birds infected with avian influenza were found in these villages.
Authorities said at least 225 birds have died in Kendrewadi as of Monday, while 12 chickens have died in Sukni and four in Wanjarwadi of Udgir taluka.
Maharashtra’s Animal Husbandry Minister Sunil Kedar said the government will soon take steps to ensure that unorganized gamers engaged in poultry farming get insurance coverage.
Uttar Pradesh
In Uttar Pradesh, up to 74 birds, including 51 crows and nine pigeons, were found dead in the past 24 hours in Kanpur, authorities said, adding that samples were sent for analysis.
Samples from a pair of dead birds at the Kanpur Zoo had previously tested positive for bird flu.
Some herons and crows were found dead near the Bharua Sumerpur train station in Hamirpur and samples were sent for examination.
The high alert has been sounded in Uttarakhand with the samples of two dead crows that tested positive for bird flu in the state.
Samples of the dead crows sent to NIHSAD tested positive for avian influenza on Monday, forestry officials confirmed.
About 300 birds, mostly crows, have been found dead in different parts of Uttarakhand, including Dehradun, Rishikesh and Kotdwar, in recent days.
Telangana Animal Husbandry Minister T Srinivas Yadav said there is no bird flu in the state and various preventive measures have been initiated. There is no harm in consuming chicken and eggs, he said.

Times of India