March 5, 2013


Myanmar detects bird flu in poultry farms


In 2012, abnormal chicken deaths in poultry farms were detected by Myanmar and dead chickens were traded without permission from authorities.


This is according to an official from the epidemiology section of the Livestock Breeding and Veterinary Department (LBVD).


Some townships in the country have been regarded as special zones for breeding chickens and quails. The townships include Monywa, Shwebo, Mandalay in the middle and upper Myanmar, Kyaukme and Taunggyi in Shan State, Bago region and Nyaungnapin in Yangon region.


In January 2013, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and Myanmar LBVD had lectured the poultry owners about bird flu in chickens and human, and surveyed the occurrence of H5N1.


According to data released by the LBVD, townships in Sagaing region and Bago region had been detected with H5N1 infections in the survey. The chicken traders sold dead chickens in the markets without informing the authorities about the occurrence of abnormal deaths. The owners, without analysing the cause of the deaths and diagnosis, fail to sterilise and monitor the disease infections in their poultry farms, also due to lack of awareness about healthy poultry systems. Most Myanmar poultry owners are only concerned about their own wellbeing, the survey said.


Lots of chickens in poultry farms were dead simultaneously due to avian influenza, crooked neck diseases and due to the sudden high temperature. Various birds within the poultry farms, including chicken, ducks and Muscovy ducks, were infected when hibernating birds and other wild birds entered the farms, carrying the viruses. The H5N1 contaminated battery cages, poultry syringes and chicken feeds, passing on the infection to the chickens.


The hibernating birds usually come to the farms when the weather changes from winter to summer. Chickens in farms have immune deficiency due to changes in weather and get infected by the pathogens of influenza A virus, said Kyaw Naing Oo, assistant director of the epidemiology section, LBVD.