Burma has reported its first outbreak of the H5N1 strain of bird flu in poultry around the central city of Mandalay, a senior official with the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation said Monday March 13.
“They reported they had bird flu,” Laurence Glesson, a senior FAO official told AFP in Bangkok.
The government reported to the FAO early Monday March 13 that its veterinarians had for the first time detected the virus in dead poultry, he said.
“I’m not sure they found bird flu in dead chickens or dead ducks, but it’s certainly poultry or some sort,” he said.
Burma veterinary officials reported that 112 birds had died on March 8 near Mandalay, Glesson said.
Authorities culled more birds and quarantined the area, he said.
The H5N1 strain of bird flu has killed or forced the slaughter of more than 140 million chickens and ducks across Asia since 2003, and has recently spread to Europe, Africa and the Middle East.
According to the World Health Organisation, at least 97 people have died from the disease worldwide, two-thirds of them in Indonesia and Vietnam.