‘Bird flu cases rising in Plateau’
THE avian influenza, popularly known as bird flu, is on the increase in Plateau State, the local chapter of the Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN) has said.
Chairman of the chapter, John Dasar, told newsmen in Jos that the “hydra-headed disease is real,” and that the number of farms and birds affected by the disease in the state has now doubled, compared to the record in February.
“In February, we had over 80,000 birds that were affected by bird flu and 23 farms destroyed in Plateau. Today, over 183, 000 birds are affected and more than 53 poultry farms destroyed, indicating that the spread is on the increase,” he said.
He expressed sadness at the wanton destruction of birds and farms by the outbreak, as this also affects economic activities in the state since both “farmers and their workers have now become idle.
Nevertheless, he urged farmers to adhere strictly to the rules of running poultry farms, especially by ensuring that adequate bio-security measures are in place to avoid further spread. He also assured that government and the PAN leadership at state and federal levels were already working to adequately contain the spread.
However, the Desk Officer, Animal Health in the state’s Ministry of Agriculture, Dr. Ayuba Haruna, allayed the fears of contacting the disease through consumption of chicken meat and eggs, advising rather that it should be properly cooked before consumption.
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