Fri. Apr 19th, 2024

Reports reaching from Cape Town, as reported by Eye Witness News, announce the detection of bird flu in the Eastern part. According to the report, the deadly H5N8 influenza strain was picked up on a poultry farm in the Uitenhage area. Ever since, about 5,000 birds have had to be culled.

Although, there has been fear that the Flu will spread over to other parts, however, there have been no reports of fresh avian influenza outbreaks in the Western Cape. The outbreak in the East has affected tens of thousands of chickens. It is further confirmed that a large number of ducks have died or had to be culled in recent weeks. More so, a number of jobs have also been lost.

Eye Witness News stated that at least 40 cases of bird flu have been confirmed since an outbreak in June. And that hundreds of thousands of birds have perished or been culled across the country since the H5N8 strain was detected.

Commenting on the outbreak, the Department of Agriculture, Forestries and Fisheries confirmed cases of bird flu to the World Organisation for Animal Health. Poultry Disease Management Agency’s Director Majokweni says according to public documents, 43 cases have been detected.

“We’ve had 13 outbreaks in commercial poultry, we’ve had eight outbreaks in commercial ostriches, 14 outbreaks in wild birds, four outbreaks in birds that were kept as a hobby and four outbreaks in back yard poultry.”

Reacting to the incident, late last month, Agriculture Minister Senzeni Zokwana said guidelines would be released on 1 September for affected farmers to claim compensation, but these have yet to be published.

A way of rescuing the situation, the Democratic Alliance wants Zokwana to tell Parliament how his department plans to halt job losses due to bird flu.







Correspondent: Ridwan A Olayiwola


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