Avian flu: Over 2,700 ducks slaughtered in the Landes

Over 2,700 ducks were slaughtered as a preventative measure (Photo for illustration only)

Over 2,700 ducks have been slaughtered in the Landes region as a preventative measure against a suspected strain of avian ‘flu.

An H5 strain of the virus was detected in small quantities during tests on a farm in Meilhan, which led to the preventative action of slaughter, confirmed the department authorities, as reported by news source 20 Minutes today.

A “reglemented zone” of 1km in diameter has been put in place around the farm, to restrict the movement of people and other poultry in the area, and to halt the virus’s further spread.

There is no suggestion that this virus poses any significant threat to humans.

Despite the slaughter and the positive test for the ‘flu, “no clinical signs of infection” had shown up at the farm, and no link has yet been drawn between this case and the December 2017 infection seen at a farm in Saint-Jean-de-Lier, the department said.

The latter farm is found just 20km away from Meilhan, and it suffered the slaughter of 1,400 of its ducks after the appearance of avian flu there last year.

The news comes just weeks after a weak strain of the virus (H5N3) had been identified at a Lot-et-Garonne duck farm late last year, which contained over 12,000 animals.

The farm was later put in quarantine, but the ducks did not have to be slaughtered, and the farm was later able to continue operations normally.

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