Status of Avian Influenza in the country
Part of: GS Prelims and GS-II – Health
- After confirmation of positive samples from ICAR-NIHSAD, Avian Influenza has been reported from the following States (at 12 epicentre): (1) Rajasthan(crow); (2) Madhya Pradesh(crow); (3) Himachal Pradesh (migratory birds); (4) Kerala (poultry-duck)
- Measures suggested: (1) Strengthening the biosecurity of poultry farms; (2) disinfection of affected areas; (3) proper disposal of dead birds/carcasses; (4) timely collection and submission of samples for confirmation and further surveillance, etc.
- Coordination with forest department for reporting any unusual mortality of birds was also suggested to the States.
- The other states are requested to keep a vigil on any unusual mortality amongst birds and to report immediately to take necessary measures.
Important value additions
Avian Influenza (AI)
- Caused by: Avian (bird) influenza (flu) Type A viruses.
- These viruses occur naturally among wild aquatic birds worldwide and can infect domestic poultry and other bird and animal species.
- Avian flu viruses do not normally infect humans.
- Avian Influenza (AI) viruses have been circulating worldwide for centuries with four known major outbreaks recorded in the last century.
- India notified the first outbreak of avian influenza in 2006.
- Infection in humans is not yet reported in India though the disease is zoonotic.
- There is no direct evidence that AI viruses can be transmitted to humans via the consumption of contaminated poultry products.
- Implementing management practices that incorporate bio security principles, personal hygiene, and cleaning and disinfection protocols are effective means of controlling the spread of the AI viruses.
- In India, the disease spreads mainly by migratory birds coming into India during winter months i.e. from September – October to February – March.
- The secondary spread by human handling (through fomites) may also be possible.