KATHMANDU, Dec 27: With the detection of the H5N1 virus at another poultry farm in Kathmandu, rapid response teams from the District Animal Health Office, Kathmandu culled all 2,240 chickens at the farm on Wednesday.
The team comprising vets and health experts also destroyed 700 kg of chicken feed and 105 eggs stored at the farm, which is some 50 meters from a farm where the bird flu virus was confirmed some three days ago.
According to the Directorate of Animal Health (DoAH), the virus was detected at the farm owned by Surya Mohan Pokharel of Sitapaila VDC -1 Kathmandu. Earlier, the disease was confirmed at Subir Singh Basnet´s farm at Ramkot-6, where all 2,500 chicken had died. Veterinary technicians destroyed over 19,000 eggs from the farm.
DoAH said that the virus was detected in samples of chicken collected by surveillance officers. Following the outbreak, samples were collected from suspicious farms and analyzed at the central veterinary laboratory under DoAH. The laboratory on Wednesday morning confirmed infection at Pokharel´s farm also.
"Rapid response teams were mobilized immediately after confirmation of the virus," said Narayan Prasad Ghimire, senior veterinarian at DoAH. Earlier, the authorities used to take a day or two making preparations, but this time they responded immediately.
The meeting of a district co-ordination committee led by Chief District Officer (CDO) Chudamani Sharma had taken the decision to cull. DoAH´s Ghimire said that the team has also completed the first phase of disinfection at the farm. He said collection of samples of suspicious chicken is a continuous process.
DoAH has declared the area an infected zone and surveillance there has been intensified.
The virus was detected at a poultry farm at Dharke, Dhading two weeks ago, and 3,000 chickens were culled there. The virus was also detected at a poultry farm at Bode, Bhaktapur some two months ago. Veterinary officials said that there is a high possibility of bird flu outbreak during the winter season.