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Bird Flu: Ebonyi Agric Ministry Destroys 1,500 Birds In Abakaliki



BALTIMORE, MD (AFRICAN EXAMINER) – As part of measure to prevent spread of the deadly Avian Influenza disease, popularly known as Bird Flu, to other farms in parts of the state, the Ebonyi state Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources Monday destroyed a total of 1,500 affected birds, at Ugwuachara in Abakaliki.

The Commissioner in charge of the ministry in the state, Mr Uchenna Orji, who disclosed this to newsmen in Abakaliki, said that the ministry swung into action in order to decontaminate the affected farm.

According to him, “We have destroyed 1,500 birds and the feeds, to avoid further spread to other poultry farms.

He said, “We went into action following the test results which revealed that the birds had been attacked by the Avian Influenza.’’

Orji hinted that his ministry had declared a state of emergency in the poultry industry, with a view to alerting members of the public and poultry farms owners to report cases of affected birds.

The Commissioner added that the ministry would place surveillance on neighboring communities and poultry farms, to avoid any spread of the disease.

“Ebonyi is an agrarian state with crops, fish farming and poultry among others, and the ministry is alive to its duties, responsive and responsible to ensure that farmers in the state are protected from disease attacks.

“We shall mount further surveillance on other farms and maintain appropriate records and documentation.”

In his reaction, the state Director of Veterinary Services, Mr. Idiom Okoro, said multiple death of the birds purchased from a neighbouring state during the yuletide raised suspicion of Bird Flu attack.

The Director therefore, urged poultry farmers to report cases of multiple deaths promptly and assured them of compensation by the Federal ministry of Agriculture. and Rural Development.

He identified some Bird Flu symptoms as respiratory problems, weakness and multiple deaths.

Also speaking, the Avian Influenza Control Project Desk officer in the state, Dr. Rita Okoro said the destruction of the birds would go long way to help in checking the spread.

She complained that poultry farmers often denied the project access to their farms to check any possible outbreaks.

“We hope to be empowered to have access to poultry farms to be able to do our job; people have this misconception that we are trying to ruin their business.

“It is in their best interest to report outbreaks to stop further spread.”

She, however, advised poultry farmers to report to the relevant authorities suspected cases or symptoms for prompt action.


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