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Friday, January 21, 2011

Hong Kong : Large-billed Crow tests positive for H5N1 virus

Press release from Hong Kong's Centre for Health Protection :

" Under the present avian influenza surveillance programme on dead wild birds, test results available today (January 21) showed that a dead Large-billed Crow found in Tai O was confirmed to be H5N1 positive, a spokesman for the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) said.

The bird carcass was collected at Sun Ki Street, Tai O on January 18. It was highly decomposed when found and required a series of tests before avian influenza was confirmed today.

The spokesman said there were no poultry farms within three kilometres of where the dead bird was found. The Large-billed Crow is a common resident bird in Hong Kong.

In addition, a dead Oriental Magpie Robin collected on January 17 near a refuse collection point at Fairview Park, Yuen Long was also confirmed to be H5N1 positive after laboratory testing.

The spokesman said all relevant government departments would continue to remain highly vigilant and strictly enforce preventive measures against avian influenza.

The AFCD has phoned poultry farmers to remind them to strengthen precautionary and biosecurity measures against avian influenza. Letters have been issued to farmers, pet bird shop owners, licence holders of pet poultry and racing pigeons reminding them that proper precautions must be taken."

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