Over 1,500 Birds Found Dead in Ukraine
KIEV (Reuters) – Officials in Ukraine, so far free of bird flu, have sent experts to investigate the sudden deaths of more than 1,500 birds in the Crimea peninsula, the Agriculture Minister said on Friday.
Oleksander Baranivsky, speaking to 1+1 television, said the birds were found in a half dozen villages in the peninsula jutting into the Black Sea. He gave no details on the type of birds or other information.
“At the moment we have 1,621 dead birds. Tonight, the situation will become more clear,” Baranivsky told the station by telephone.
“Measures are being taken. Experts have been sent there. If cases of any specific virus are found, further measures will be introduced.”
The channel said the sale of privately raised domestic poultry had been banned in Crimea.
Romania on Friday discovered new cases of bird flu in the Danube Delta it shares with Ukraine and samples were being sent to a British laboratory to determine whether the infected birds had the highly pathogenic H5N1 strain.
Romania became the first country in mainland Europe to detect the H5N1 virus in two villages in the delta.
Bird flu has also been found in several regions of Russia, Ukraine’s northern neighbor.
Ukrainian officials have performed analyses on thousands of domestic and wild birds but detected no cases of bird flu. All hunting of birds has been halted and residents have been told to keep their stocks indoors to prevent contact with wild birds.