Andhra Pradesh officials sound alert on bird flu, collect samples from poultry farms

No reports of Avian Influenza A(H5N1) from other parts of the State, say veterinary officials

February 18, 2024 09:55 pm | Updated 09:55 pm IST - VIJAYAWADA

Chickens at a poultry farm in Vijayawada on Sunday. There has been a drop in chicken sales due to the bird flu scare in the last two days, according to traders.

Chickens at a poultry farm in Vijayawada on Sunday. There has been a drop in chicken sales due to the bird flu scare in the last two days, according to traders. | Photo Credit: G.N. Rao

Officials sounded an alert over the presence of Avian Influenza A(H5N1), also known as bird flu, in Nellore district.

The Veterinary Department, who confirmed the outbreak of bird flu in poultry farms, observed that many chickens have died of the flu. The poultry owners culled hundreds of birds to prevent the spread of the Avian Influenza A(H5N1).

The State government has formed special teams and issued instructions to officers concerned to take stringent measures to prevent the spread of bird flu.

Rapid response teams

In all 721 rapid response teams have been constituted across the State, and instructions have been given to collect samples and create awareness among the poultry farmers on the disease.

The teams will cover all villages where poultry farms are located as part of their survey on bird flu.

“Except Nellore district, there have been no reports of bird flu from other districts in the State. There is no need for any panic,” said a veterinary doctor.

Meanwhile, there was a drop in sales of chicken on Sunday in the wake of the bird flu scare.

“After reports of chickens succumbing to bird flu, many people have stopped eating chicken. Sales have remained low after the outbreak of the disease,” a trader named Venkanna from Vijayawada said.

“Poultry owners were asked not to dispose of dead birds in canals, fields, and in open places, and were asked to alert the officers concerned,” said Rama Krishna, a resident of Undi in West Godavari district.

“We collected random samples from the poultries in Krishna, East Godavari, NTR District, West Godavari, Konaseema and other districts and the results came back negative,” said a veterinary officer.

“With the outbreak of Avian Influenza A(H5N1) in Nellore, we have not been eating chicken for the last two days,” said a woman named Prameela of Gudivada.

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