National Wildlife Health Center

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Avian Influenza

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News Update October, 10 2014

Avian Influenza in Wild Animals

The Fisheries and Maritime Museum in Esbjerg reported a large number of dead seals found over the past week on the Danish island of Fano. Officials speculate that illness could have spread from the nearly 400 harbor seals that have been reported dead in western Sweden so far this year, ten times the annual average of 30 to 40. Two of the animals in Sweden tested positive for a form of bird flu, but the infection is not suspected to be the cause of death. Two seals in Denmark are also known to have died from bird flu recently. Samples were sent to the Technical University of Denmark's National Veterinary Institute in Copenhagen, where experts are particularly focused on seeing if the animals contracted PDV, a virus that wiped out a large number of seals in 1988 and 2002. PDV has been ruled out in the deaths of 100 seals on the Danish island of Anholt at the beginning of July. Examination of four of the seals found that they had died of bacterial pneumonia.

Avian Influenza in Poultry

South Africa (H5N2/H7N1)
Subclinical cases of the low pathogenic H5N2 avian flu virus have been found in commercial ostriches on three farms in Western Cape Province between July 22 and September 1. The veterinary authority sent a follow up report on October 7 to the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE). A total of 1,647 of the 4,099 birds tested positive for the virus. None have died or been destroyed.

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