Via Macau Business Daily: The virus was already in Macau. Excerpt:
The avian influenza virus may have entered the city before poultry imported from the mainland was found to have been infected.
The Civic and Municipal Affairs Bureau found an H7-type avian influenza virus in tissue samples recently collected from two wet markets, indicating that the bird flu virus was present in Macau before a batch of poultry that was imported from the mainland turned out to be inflected, Health Bureau director Lei Chin Ion has said.
Mr Lei said two infected samples had been collected from live poultry stalls in São Domingos wet market in the city centre and São Lourenço wet market during spot checks of fresh food stalls last Wednesday.
The authorities ordered a 21-day ban on imports of live poultry from the mainland last Thursday after they detected an H7-type bird flu virus in some of a batch of 1,000 live chickens in Nam Yue wholesale market the night before.
The chickens were imported from the Doumen district of Zhuhai.
“The virus-infected samples that we found in the two local wet markets were not collected from live chickens, but from the butcher’s blocks at the stalls,” a spokesman for the Civic and Municipal Affairs Bureau told Business Daily.
“But we have yet to confirm the source of this avian flu virus and how it got into these wet market stalls,” the spokesman added.
The Health Bureau had reported no cases of humans in Macau being infected with the H7N9 bird flu virus. Further information is to be released but had not been received at time of going to press.