Bird flu hits Hyderabad poultry; Don’t panic, say experts

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Hyderabad: After the first case of bird flu was detected in Telangana, at Hayathnagar on the outskirts of Hyderabad in Ranga Reddy district, the animal husbandry department will cull 1.45 lakh chickens in the coming two-three days.

The bird flu outbreak was reported after a poultry farm owner from Hayathnagar sent five chicken samples to the National Institute of High Security Animal Diseases laboratory in Bhopal on April 11 after he witnessed unusual deaths in his poultry farm.

The lab sent information late on April 13 that the samples had tested positive for the H5N1 influenza virus, popularly known as bird flu.

On Tuesday, a 1-km radius area around the farm was declared as an infection zone and areas falling in a 10-km radius beyond that were declared as surveillance zones. The infection zone has five poultry farms that house 1.45 lakh chickens. The surveillance zone covers 18 villages of which 17 fall under Hayathnagar and one in Saroornagar mandal.

Dr D. Venkateswarlu, director of the animal husbandry department, said that 65 teams had been formed with each team lead by a veterinarian and comprising three-four workmen for the culling operations.

On Tuesday 35,000 chickens were culled and the staff at the farm was given Tamiflu doses.

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