Australia Kills 24,000 Ducks To Stop Bird Flu

Posted February 1st, 2012 at 7:50 am (UTC-5)
Leave a comment

Australian authorities Wednesday were to destroy 24,000 ducks that tested positive for bird flu, but said the outbreak does not pose a threat to humans.

Andreas Dubs, the head of the Australian Chicken Meat Federation, said Wednesday the ducks were infected with a low pathogenic form of the avian influenza. It is separate from the potentially deadly H5N1 strain of the virus that has spread through chicken and duck farms in Asia.

Officials say the outbreak was confined to two duck farms owned by the same company in the southern Australian state of Victoria. They say the birds at those farms are being destroyed and the facilities sterilized to prevent the spread of the virus.

Dubs says recent bans on Australian chicken imports by some Asian countries are an overreaction. He says the virus has not spread to chickens and that it does not pose a food safety threat.

Earlier this week, Japan announced a total ban on all poultry imports from Australia. Vietnam, Singapore, Indonesia and Hong Kong have also placed partial bans on chicken coming from Victoria.