Migratory birds suspected in B.C. A.I. cases

by MEAT&POULTRY Staff
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VANCOUVER, B.C. — Recent outbreaks of avian influenza in Canada’s Fraser Valley region may have occurred due to the prevalence of migratory birds in the area, according to The Associated Press. The same H5 strain of the virus was detected in some turkeys on a property owned by two brothers in January, and 60,000 turkeys were culled on an Abbotsford farm last week.

Tests results indicate the virus has not spread within a two mile quarantine zone, however the Washington Department of Agriculture increased tests for the virus at 13 farms in Whatcom County several miles to the south.

"We're on the Pacific flyway, so there are lots of birds passing through every year," said Ronald Lewis, the province's chief veterinary officer, "and we know wild waterfowl carry a variety of different strains of avian influenza."

Meanwhile, Fraser Valley poultry producers are awaiting tests to determine how contagious the virus in the latest outbreak may be.

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