Avian flu confirmed in Neyaashiinigmiing

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Bird flu was discovered in a flock of poultry in Neyaashiinigmiing.

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The Canadian Food Inspection Agency announced on Thursday that highly pathogenic avian influenza (H5N1) was in Cape Town.

Last week, the CFIA also confirmed the disease was affecting flocks of turkeys in Woolwich Township, Waterloo Region. in the township of Zorra in the county of Oxford; and the Township of Guelph/Eramosa in Wellington County.

A notice posted Friday on the Chippewas of Nawash First Nation website also confirmed bird flu in a flock of poultry in Neyaashiinigmiing, but did not identify the variety of birds involved.

The CFIA was notified of a potentially sick flock of poultry at Neyaashiinigmiing and the agency visited the site and took samples for testing on Monday March 28.

A flock tested positive for bird flu in a preliminary test on March 30, then further tests on April 1 confirmed it was H5N1 avian flu.

“The risk to humans is very low,” says Nawash’s advisory. “Human infections are rare and usually transmitted through close contact with infected bird droppings.”

Avian influenza is a contagious viral infection that can affect several species of food-producing birds as well as pet birds and wild birds. “For the moment, assume that all wild birds, poultry, geese and ducks are infected,” the notice reads.

The federal bulletin says the agency has placed the Neyaashiinigmiing premises under quarantine and is establishing movement control measures and recommending enhanced biosecurity for other farms in that area, the bulletin said.

The federal bulletin advised anyone with poultry or other susceptible birds to practice good biosecurity habits. “Avian influenza is spreading through wild bird populations around the world and is a significant national concern as birds migrate to Canada.

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