January 7, 2009

Hong Kong warns public against keeping backyard poultry


Hong Kong's Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) has reminded the public not to keep backyard poultry, in an effort to minimise bird flu risk.


Unauthorised keeping of five kinds of poultry - chickens, ducks, geese, pigeons and quails - is an offence with a maximum fine of HK50,000 to HKD100,000, said an AFCD spokesman.


A recent inspection by AFCD officers found a woman illegally keeping 12 live chickens, which were eventually seized and put down after taking samples for testing.


A ban on backyard poultry has been in force since 2006 to protect public health and reduce the risk of a bird flu outbreak in Hong Kong.