Indore: Seven more crows dropped dead of suspected H5N8 avian influenza on Saturday in Daly College (DC).
A joint team of veterinary and IMC staff took samples of chicken being sold in nearby shops to check if the virus has spread to local poultry. There are no indications it has.
Officials said there is a very low chance of transmission of H5N8 avian influenza into chicken. “The samples have been collected as a precaution,” said Dr PK Sharma, deputy director of veterinary department.
The veterinary department has collected random samples of chicken from the shops near Daly College. The survey is being undertaken from shops in 5km radius. People were also checked for cough, cold and fever, said officials. Seven teams visited Azad Nagar, Musakhedi, Residency, Palda Naka, Snehlataganj and Chouhan Nagar localities.
Officials said H5N8 influenza has killed over 110 crows in DC premises in Indore, including 13 on Saturday. The carcasses were buried in a 6-ft-deep pit, which was then covered with lime.
The first crow deaths were noticed in Daly College on December 25, but were initially thought to be cold or hunger deaths. But when more carcasses were found, the veterinary department was alerted on December 29.
Samples were sent to a Bhopal-based laboratory for tests and found positive for H5N8 avian influenza commonly known as bird flu.
Businessmen who have registered the business through the Veterinary Department have been instructed to inform the department immediately if a bird dies.
No human infections detected so far
Officials have found three different subtypes of HPAI viruses: A(H5N8), A(H5N5) and A(H5N1).
In this case, “H” and “N” stand for ‘hemagglutinin’ and ‘neuraminidase’, which are two types of proteins on the surfaces of flu viruses.
This year, of the three HPAI viruses, by far the most common subtype has been influenza A(H5N8).
All three of these virus subtypes came from the same initial virus subtype and emerged due to mutations.
No human infection due to these viruses has so far been detected and the threat to the general population is currently low, continued surveillance of avian influenza viruses in city is important to monitor virus evolution and emergences.