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Suspected bird flu surfaces in West Bengal
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Suspected bird flu surfaces in West Bengal

Authorities in West Bengal have tested dead poultry for bird flu after more than 3,000 birds were found dead, officials said on Tuesday.

Matigara (West Bengal), May 8 : Authorities in West Bengal have tested dead poultry for bird flu after more than 3,000 birds were found dead, officials said on Tuesday.

The dead chickens were found over the past two days at poultry farms in remote Matigara village in the State, close to the border with Bangladesh that has witnessed several outbreaks of the H5N1 bird flu virus in fowl this year.

An official said investigators were doing post-mortems of the birds to ascertain the cause of death.

"Preliminary precautionary measures have been taken. Bleaching has been done. Lime wash has been carried out and the dead chicken that were scattered all around have been collected and scientifically buried. Yesterday, scientists had come from Kolkata and they have collected serum samples and have taken them back for investigation and after analysis they will ascertain the cause of death," P. Zimba, Sub Divisional Officer, Siliguri.Matigara village in West Bengal's Darjeeling District is 25 km from the Bangladesh border.

Healthcare workers buried hundreds of birds in huge pits at poultry farms in the area and sprayed disinfectant over the sites.

Officials said a poultry farm with about 11,000 birds had been affected, and they were not taking any chances.

New Delhi was praised by international agencies for it's handling of bird flu outbreaks in India last year, especially giving quick compensation to farmers.

Bird flu has killed more than 170 people since late 2003, according to the World Health Organisation. At least 200 million birds have died.

ANI

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