File photo(Santosh Kumar/ Hindustan Times)
File photo(Santosh Kumar/ Hindustan Times)

Bird flu: Samples from 5 more districts found positive in Rajasthan, over 2100 birds dead

The samples from districts such as Jhalawar, Kota, Baran, Sawai Madhopur, Jaipur and Chittorgarh have already been confirmed with bird flu.
Hindustan Times, Jaipur | By Sachin Saini
UPDATED ON JAN 08, 2021 09:07 PM IST

Avian influenza (bird flu) has spread to a total of 11 districts in Rajasthan with the samples of dead birds from Banswara, Hanumangarh, Dausa, Pali and Jaisalmer districts also found positive on Friday.

The samples from districts such as Jhalawar, Kota, Baran, Sawai Madhopur, Jaipur and Chittorgarh have already been confirmed with bird flu. The test report identifies avian influenza subtype H5N8 in the birds, which according to experts is less infectious.

The death of birds continues to be reported in Rajasthan but no case of bird flu has been found in the chickens yet. The bird fatality is spreading at an alarming rate across the state. As per official figures, the death of birds reached 2,166, with 329 fatalities reported on Friday.

A senior official of the animal husbandry department said that since December 26, 2,166 birds have died. Most of the fatalities were reported in crows (1706), followed by peacocks (136), pigeons (93), poultry (50) and 181 others. While bird flu report is found positive in 11 districts, in Jodhpur, it has come out negative. He added that a total of 211 samples have been sent to Bhopal for testing.

The official added that the random samples of migratory birds and chickens are also been taken as precautions. “No confirmation of bird flu disease is found in chickens. And no case of bird deaths has been reported from Udaipur, Rajsamand, Dholpur, and Barmer,” he said.

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Microbiologist, Dr AK Kataria said the laboratory findings are for confirmation of the diseases and the results should be correlated with clinical science, post mortem lesion, mortality pattern, species affected, and age. Mere isolation of the virus doesn’t confirm the occurrence of the disease in the body.

He said the lab reports are also showing negative results in samples, which shows that the birds aren’t dying of flu but of cold shock or other reasons. The interpretation of the lab reports is required for the declaration of the disease.

The first-ever incident of bird flu in Rajasthan is a serious concern of the government, especially at a time when people are already struggling with Covid-19. Bird flu (avian influenza) caused by the virus is contagious and fatal.

In March 2020, the death of dozens of crows due to bird flu was reported from various parts of Bihar, which sparked fear among the residents amid the outbreak of coronavirus pandemic. In 2006, death of chickens due to this flu was reported from Maharashtra.

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