Poultry farmers put on alert over bird flu outbreak

Ogbeh puts poultry farmers on alert over bird flu outbreak
..says no vaccine to cure virus
THE Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh, yesterday, put poultry farmers across the country on alert over the recent outbreak of bird flu in Kano State.
Ogbeh said poultry farmers should apply preventive measures to curtail any penetration in their farms by migratory birds from Europe and other parts of the world believed to be carriers of the virus, which in the process rest as they come in contact with birds in the poultry farms before proceeding also leads to outbreak of avian influenza popularly called bird flu. 
According to the Minister’s explanation over permanent cure of the virus and eradication he said the constant change in the strain of the virus makes it difficult for permanent solution hence the recurrence of the outbreak, which the best way to approach it remains preventive measures.
He said: “There is bird flu in Cameroon and in Europe now, they move from Europe to South Africa in the winter, they stop in the Adaeja river basin for days to rest before they move on.
“We don’t have the vaccine yet, we are calling a meeting of all the commissioners of Agriculture to take measures to control it because there is no vaccine yet.
“We are telling farmers to try and take measures to avoid the spread of the disease. The strain keeps changes which is why vet doctors have not been able to find a solution to it.
“For now only Kano has an outbreak and we are controlling it, we are making sure there is no movement of chicken from state to state.”
The Minister also lamented over paucity of fund to compensate farm owners over the loss of their birds to the virus in 2015. However, he promised that government will certainly come to their aid as there are moves in that direction.
“Unfortunately, those who lost chickens last year, we have not been able to compensate because we didn’t have money. We are putting some funds together to help them out”, he said.

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