At a time when the sale of chickens has been banned in Kathmandu Valley following rapid spread of H5N1, bird flu has been detected on four poultry farms in Pagretar VDC of Sindhupalchowk district.
Around 1,300 chickens on four poultry farms in Pagretar VDC were culled on Saturday. According to Chief of the Sindhupalchowk District Veterinary Office Chabi Lal Adhikari, a rapid response team of 11 veterinarians were deployed to cull the chickens immediately after the chickens on these farms tested positive for bird flu infection on Friday morning. The team was led by Dr Awaj Prasad Jha of the Directorate of Animal Health at Tripureshwar.
Bird flu was first detected on the poultry farm owned by Mina Karki. She had total of 500 chickens. She lost 400 chickens in 20 days and decided to finally inform the Veterinary Office.
“After detection of the bird flu virus, we couldn´t take chances. We also culled chickens on three other poultry farms. Since the virus had started its effect more than 20 days ago, the possibility of infection on other poultry farms was high,” said Adhikari.
After declaration of Kathmandu and Bhaktapur as bird flu emergency zone, the virus has been detected on more than half a dozens of poultry farms in Kavre district.
“As the locals do not seek technical advice from us, it has become difficult for us to monitor the poultry farms,” said Adhikari.
According to Adhikari, there are around 50 poultry farms in Sindhupalchowk.
“Most of the poultry farms are located at Barabise, Chautara and Melamchi of the district,” said Adhikari.
Meanwhile, the government has provided Rs 130[US$1.28] per chicken to the poultry farms.