A total of 1,040 birds, comprising 932 poultry birds, died from avian influenza in Maharashtra on Thursday. Samples have been sent to the National Institute of High Security Animal Diseases in Bhopal and Disease Investigation Section in Pune. Death of a total of 13,792 birds of various species has been recorded since January 8.
According to the Department of Animal Husbandry, wherever positive reports in poultry birds and ducks have been communicated, the process of declaring them as an ‘infected zone’ has been initiated to enforce the prescribed preventive measures as per the provisions of the Prevention and Control of Infectious and Contagious Diseases in Animals Act, 2009. Poultry samples from 16 districts were found positive for bird flu. All poultry birds, eggs, poultry feed and droppings within a radius of 1 km from the poultry farm are being scientifically destroyed.
Of the 30 places, destruction of poultry birds, eggs, feed and excreta has been completed in 22 places. So far, 38,658 birds, 35,146 eggs and 52,684 kg of feed have been destroyed.
Surveillance work has been continued in places where positive results have been reported in other species of birds, excluding poultry. The central government team today visited Beed and Parbhani to monitor the activities to control the disease.
To contain the incidences of bird flu without delay, the state has conferred all its powers to district collectors under the Prevention and Control of Infectious and Contagious Diseases in Animals Act, 2009, for the prevention, control and eradication of avian influenza. The local administration can initiate the process of declaring Alert Zones in areas where poultry birds are suspected to be dead of bird flu and ensure necessary precautions.
The department has communicated to the owners of poultry farms and general public that intimation of mortality in the crows, parrots, herons or in migratory birds in any village or of any unusual mortality of poultry birds in commercial farms and in backyard poultry should be given immediately to the nearest veterinary dispensary.