Five states in Nigeria hit by H5N1
Iran Press TV
Wed Jan 21, 2015 6:2PM
Tens of thousands of chickens have been culled in five states across Nigeria after the discovery of bird flu in some poultry farms, officials say.
Agriculture Minister Akinwumi Adesina told reporters in the capital, Abuja, on Wednesday that the five states badly affected by the H5N1 strain of bird flu were Lagos and Ogun in the southwest, Delta and Rivers in the south, and Kano in the north.
At least 15 commercial farms and nine live bird markets were affected across the states in recent weeks, he added.
As of January 21, a total of 139,505 birds have been associated with bird flu exposures, with 22,173 (15 percent) mortality recorded," media outlets quoted the Nigerian minister as saying.
Adesina also pointed out that Kano has been the worst affected, with 103,445 birds reported as exposed to infection.
According to the official, the cases of the H5N1 strain were first confirmed on a commercial farm in Kano and at a live bird market in Lagos on January 8.
The minister noted that the government was taking all the necessary steps in order to ensure public safety across the country.
Sources say the Nigerian health officials are taking enhanced hygiene procedures against the spread of the virus. The bio-security measures introduced include comprehensive surveillance of poultry farms, quarantine and decontamination of outbreak sites.
Since first appearing in 2003, the H5N1 has claimed more than 400 lives, mainly in Southeast Asia. H7N9, another strain of bird flu, has killed more than 170 people since emerging in 2013.
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