Punjab reports first bird flu case

Bar-headed goose sample from Rupnagar tests +ve for H5N1

Punjab reports first bird flu case

H5N1 causes a highly infectious, severe respiratory disease in birds. Tribune photo

Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, January 19

Punjab reported its first confirmed case of bird flu today. As per a report by a Bhopal lab, the strain found in a dead bar-headed goose from Rupnagar has been found positive for H5N1. This strain primarily infects birds, but can also be transmitted to humans.

Strain can infect humans

  • H5N1 causes a highly infectious, severe respiratory disease in birds
  • Human cases of avian influenza occur occasionally with 60% mortality rate

The Department of Forest and Wildlife Preservation had sent the sample to the lab on January 8. According to district authorities, a team of Wildlife Department officials was on visit to the Siswan forest area when a bar-headed goose fell nearby and died on the spot. The official sent the tissue samples of the bird to Northern Regional Disease Diagnostic Laboratory, Jalandhar, which had reported it to be a suspected bird flu case. The sample was then sent to ICAR-National Institute of High Security Animal Diseases (ICAR-NIHSAD), which today confirmed the bird flu strain.

37% vaccinated on day 3

The state failed to achieve its target on Tuesday with just 2,109 (37%) of 5,619 targeted persons turning up for Covid jab.

VK Janjua, Additional Chief Secretary, Animal Husbandry, said the case pertained to the Wildlife Department. “But we had sent our team to the spot and it didn’t find any poultry farm within a kilometre radius,” he said.

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