Bird flu: Maharashtra sees 238 bird deaths, higher than Tuesday; toll nearing 2,100
The animal husbandry department of Maharashtra said that 238 bird deaths were reported in the state on Wednesday adding that the samples have been sent for testing. “Total 2,096 bird deaths reported in the state from 8 January till now,” the department said. Wednesday’s toll is higher than that of Tuesday, when 218 bird deaths were added to the state's toll of which 200 were from Yavatmal, 11 from Amravati and seven from Akola, according to an official quoted by new agency PTI. Avian influenza has been confirmed in Parbhani, Mumbai, Thane, Beed and Dapoli districts till now.
Amid the increasing spread of the virus, Maharashtra’s animal husbandry minister Sunil Kedar had said on Tuesday that the state government was on alert in order to deal with any situation in the coming days. He added that culling had begun in the Parbhani district after bird flu was identified as the reason for the death of nearly 800 hens over the past few days at a poultry farm there.
“We had a meeting with chief minister with all the district collectors. The forest department and animal husbandry departments are working together with the district administration. We are having a close watch on all the development in this regard,” the minister said while speaking to reporters.
Earlier, 4,000 birds were culled in Latur with the district administration issuing a prohibitory order which stopped the transportation of poultry products, birds, animal feed and manure. Vehicles have also been banned from entering the bird-flu hit areas in the district. The order further added that entrance and the premises of the affected poultry should be disinfected with Potassium Permanganate or Sodium Hydroxide.
Meanwhile, Thane collector Rajesh Narvekar ordered the forest department to pay attention towards wetland areas for migration of birds in the district. “Seven rapid response teams have been deployed in the district and a control room has been activated to monitor the bird flu situation,” the collector had said on Tuesday. He added that stringent action would be taken against those who circulated fake news about the virus and urged residents to not pay heed to any such misinformation.
(With agency inputs)