Bird flu confirmed in Siliguri, culling begins
Days after bird flu outbreak at Siliguri plains and south Dinajpur district in north Bengal, the presence of H5N1 virus in Kurseong region of Darjeeling Hills was today confirmed with the administration ordering the culling of about 5,000 birds.
"The blood sample report of a fowl found dead in Pendong village in Kurseong sub-division, tested at Bhopal laboratory, confirmed the presence of bird flu," senior district official Kasturi Sengupta said.
The official, now looking after the SDO's office, said culling of birds in the three-km radius of Pendong village, including Sukna-I, Sukna-II blocks under Kurseong and Champasari gram panchayats, would begin this evening.
Ten culling teams, each having a security person and an animal resource development staff, were formed to exterminate around 5,000 birds by tomorrow which would be followed by a two-day mopping.
The control room was set up Pintal Village, about six km from the town.
In the first week of January 2009 the avian influenza was detected in Siliguri municipal corporation area and adjoining areas and more that 30,000 birds were culled and huge poultry products were destroyed.