Saturday, November 25, 2006
S. Korea To Quarantine Bird Flu Outbreak
South Korean quarantine officials will slaughter 236,000 poultry after an outbreak of the virulent H5N1 form of bird flu at a chicken farm, the agriculture ministry said Saturday.
The outbreak occurred at a farm in Iksan, about 155 miles south of Seoul, earlier this week, resulting in the deaths of 6,700 chickens.
Test results confirmed that the outbreak was caused by a “highly pathogenic” type of H5N1 virus, the ministry said in a statement.
It said 236,000 poultry within a 1,650-foot radius of the outbreak site would be slaughtered to keep the virus from spreading.
The “highly pathogenic” type of H5N1 can be lethal to poultry but poses little risk to people, said Kwon Jun-wook, an official at the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Kim Joo-il, an official at Iksan city hall, said the owner of the chicken farm has so far showed no signs of illness.
South Korea killed 5.3 million birds during the last known outbreak of bird flu in 2003.