- (Reuters) -- Romania reported its 1st case of avian flu
in domestic birds in the Danube delta on Friday [7 Oct 2005], but did not
say whether the virus was fatal to humans.
- "We discovered today 3 cases of domestic birds which
tested positive for the avian flu in the village of Ceamurlia de Jos in
the Danube delta," Agriculture Minister Gheorghe Flutur told reporters.
"They were 3 ducks in the yard of a peasant family."
- Flutur would not comment whether the flu was the deadly
H5N1 strain but said: "We will send the samples to Great Britain for
a thorough analysis."
- The minister said he imposed quarantine for 3 kilometres
(2 miles) around the site and all domestic birds would be culled to prevent
the disease from spreading in the environmentally sensitive delta, Europe's
- Flutur also said hunting was banned across the delta.
Romania's Danube delta and lakes in northern Bulgaria are popular with
flocks of red-breasted geese from Siberia as well as white-fronted geese
from Scandinavia, Poland, and Germany.
- The head of the country's veterinary watchdog agency
Ion Agafitei said final results of the tests were expected in a couple
of days, adding: "We may find a less risky strain or a more dangerous
- From the above newswire it seems that the Romanian authorities
are considering the detection of "positive cases" of avian influenza
in 3 ducks as an outbreak, applying exceptionally severe control measures.
It is not clear if this is an outcome of alarming clinical/laboratory findings
or a reflection of precaution. More details, including clinical findings
and the nature of the test applied, will be helpful. - Mod.AS
- Patricia A. Doyle, PhD
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