No bird flu in Nepal, says govt

Kathmandu, July 10:

Despite frequent rumours, not a single case of avian influenza has been traced in the county, the Directorate of Animal Health stated at a press conference today.

The Directorate of Animal Health also requested the media to publish only fact-based reports on bird flu.

Stating that rumours about bird flu had created difficulties for farmers, Dr Baikuntha Parajuli,

programme director of the Directorate of Animal Health, asked all concerned to inform the authorities concerned if poultry-related outbreak was reported, but not to vindicate it as bird flu.

Bird flu has been traced in 60 countries, including our neighbouring countries, Parajuli said, adding that Nepal may also be at risk.

“We have taken all necessary measures to keep the disease at bay,” he said.

Feed and poultry can be imported only through quarantine posts, Parajuli said, adding that illegal imports were being destroyed.

Certification of the physical condition and sources of the poultry has begun even for internal trade, he said.

Parajuli informed that the import of feed and poultry related products from the countries identified with bird flu have been banned.

According to doctors, the disease could also spread through dead poultry and excreta of poultry, where the virus could sustain for almost three months.

A gram of excreta is capable of infecting around one million poultry.

Death of more than 70 per cent of poultry at once, laying of irregular shaped eggs and internal bleeding are some symptoms of bird flu, Parajuli said.

Such incidents should be reported to the authorities concerned for the test, the DAH programme director added.