GERMANY, Bonn. The disease is breaking into more large flocks in Lower Saxony, northern Italy and the Netherlands. Tens of thousands of animals have been culled.
In Germany, the bird flu virus was again introduced into livestock last week. A suspected case in the city of Vechta was confirmed, which is why 35,000 laying hens had to be culled there. In the Bavarian district of Weilheim-Schongau, a small hobby farm with about 20 animals was affected. A larger outbreak also occurred in a poultry farm in Garrel in the district of Cloppenburg, where a good 10,000 turkeys had to be killed. However, this outbreak was caused by the low pathogenic avian influenza type H5N3. According to the district, there are so far five outbreak farms with a total of 74,900 animals, of which 37,200 are turkeys and 37,700 ducks.
241 cases on Italian farms
Meanwhile, the disease situation in Italy has worsened. The Northern Italian Research Institute for the Prevention of Animal Diseases (IZSVe) identified a total of 241 infections on professional farms between mid-October and 19 December. As a result, a total of around nine million laying hens, broilers and turkeys were culled. The Veneto and Lombardy regions, where most of the large poultry farms are located, were particularly affected. According to the director of the Veterinary Department, part of the National Institute of Health (ISS), Dr Umberto Agrimi, avian influ enza has spread much further this year than on average in previous years. Specialist media have warned that the capacity of rendering plants is likely to be exhausted soon if the number of outbreaks continues to rise. The Ministry of Health is currently planning an order prohibiting affected farms from restocking their herds.
In the Netherlands, a further 64,000 poultry had to be killed as a precautionary measure on Monday last week on a total of three farms near Ysselsteyn in the province of Limburg because of suspected infection with the HPAI virus type H5. This brought the total number of animals culled in the Netherlands since the outbreak of the disease on October 26 to 508,390. Meanwhile, the Swiss Federal Food Safety and Veterinary Office (FSVO) in Bern said the precautionary measures would be lifted from December 27, 2021, following the appearance of the HPAI virus in Hüntwangen at the end of November. The transport of eggs and poultry within a radius of 10 km around the affected farm would then be possible again without restrictions.
Source: fleischwirtschaft.de, AgE