While suspected cases of avian influenza (bird flu) are being reported from various parts of the State, the disease has been confirmed only at three places in Kozhikode and Malappuram, Minister for Animal Husbandry and Dairy Development K. Raju has said.
Mr. Raju, while replying to questions in the Assembly on Thursday, said that while birds in parts of Kozhikode, including Kodiyathur and Vengeri, were initially affected, the disease had now been confirmed in Parappanangady in Malappuram.
Special squads had been formed to cull birds within a certain distance around the affected areas. The situation had been brought under control.
According to a Malappuram report The culling of poultry and other pet birds within one-kilometre radius of Parappanangadi will begin on Saturday. About 4,000 chicken and birds are expected to be killed in two days as part of defensive measures being taken to prevent the spread of bird flu.
He said the State was well-equipped with specialised laboratories to diagnose zoonotic diseases without delay and adopt preventive measures. Besides the State Institute for Animal Diseases at Palode, the apex laboratory of the Animal Husbandry Department, four regional disease diagnostic laboratories functioned at Palode, Thiruvalla, Palakkad and Kannur.
Lumpy skin disease
Responding to questions by Eldo Abraham and N. Shamsudeen, the Minister said the recent spate of lumpy skin disease, caused by the capripox virus, among cattle and the drought in various parts of the State had taken a toll on milk production in the State. The production of milk had fallen from 19.1 lakh litres a day in December 2019 to 18.69 lakh litres by January 2020.
The situation had resulted in the decrease of 41,000 litres of milk a day.