Avian influenza – Europe

Avian influenza has been spotted in Belgium, Germany, France, India, Slovenia, Sweden and Taiwan. It is either detected in wild swan populations or poultry farming.


Three contaminated poultry flocks have been culled, one in Menin, in the west of the country, another in Dinant in the south and a third in Dixmude in western Flanders.

Poultry owners are ordered to lock up their animals to avoid contamination.

20 cases of Avian flu have been found in wild birds recently.


A buzzard was found to be infected with Avian flu in Donaueschingen, Schwarzwald-Barr-Kreis, Baden-Wurttemberg. A surveillance zone is set up to monitor the situation.

Photo: H5N1 virus colorized micrograph, viruses are gold colored in MDCK cells (green).


French producers of foie-gras called for a mass preventive cull of ducks to try to halt the spread of a severe strain of bird flu that is ripping through poultry farms in the southwest of the country.

The highly pathogenic H5N8 virus was first detected in a bird in a pet shop on the Mediterranean island of Corsica in November before spreading to duck farms on the mainland in December.

Over 200,000 ducks have already been slaughtered and a further 400,000 birds are set to be culled.


With the toll of migratory waterbirds rising to over 1800, and almost half of them being endangered bar-headed goose visiting the Pong wetlands, the Himachal Pradesh wildlife authorities on Monday Jan 4 2021 suspected avian influenza as the cause.


A mute swan was found injured in the municipality of Koper and was euthanised due to trauma. The swan was found to be infected with Avian flu.


A poultry farm (unknown location) has been found to have an infected population with Avian flu. A 3km protection zone was set up and a 20km surveillance zone is put in place. The poultry of the affected farm will be liquidated.


A captured swan in Aogu Wetlands Forest Park was sampled and found to be infected with Avian flu.


The Netherlands, Sweden, Britain and Ireland have also reported bird flu outbreaks since the winter began.


Avian influenza is deadly to most birds, but it can also be deadly to humans and other animals that catch the virus (poultry farming). Since the first human case in 1997, H5N1 has killed nearly 60% of those who have been infected. Unlike human flu, avian flu does not spread easily from person to person.

Avian influenza subtypes H5N8, H5N5, H5N3, and H5N1 are currently circulating mostly in the European continent (for now). The pathogens have been detected in wild birds and these viruses are being distributed wherever wild birds migrate.

Poultry producers are recommended to implement bio-security measures necessary to protect their flocks and humans from exposure and infection.

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