Avian Influenza scare
Migratory birds drop dead like nine pins
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, January 30: Even as a red alert has been sounded all over the country following the outbreak of bird flu in West Bengal on January 15, which has affected 13 of its 19 districts so far, caution has been sounded following the death of at least seven migratory birds, probably Gold Magpie, at Maharabi near Sekmai in Imphal West district during the last 48 hours.

Moreover four Bulbuls (Khoining) were also found dead during the same period.

A Vet officer holding up the carcass of a migratory bird

This information was conveyed to The Sangai Express today evening by the villagers of Maharabi.

The Sangai Express then passed on the information to the Veterinary and Animal Husbandry Department.

A team of media persons and a team from the VAH led by Dr K Gopal, the State Nodal Officer on Avian Influenza then rushed to the said place this evening.

Giving details, the vice president of Maharabi Youth Club, K Shyamchand said that the six migratory birds dropped dead from the trees in the village near human habitation yesterday.

The birds which usually come to the village at the time of this year annually could not grasp the tree branches securely, he said and added that they dropped from the trees and died.

As the villagers were not aware of the likely ramifications, six birds were consumed yesterday.

Another bird died today, he said and added that this was what upped their ante.

Four Bulbuls also died during the last 48 hours he disclosed and added that while two died yesterday, another two dead birds were detected today.

The two birds found yesterday were fed to the dogs, he said and added that the other two found today have been disposed off.

The village will be thoroughly scouted tomorrow to see if there are more dead birds, said K Shyamchand.

The Veterinary team collected the sample of the dead bird found today and the same will be sent to the High Security Animal Disease Laboratory, Bhopal tomorrow.

Significantly, bird flu was confirmed in Manipur last year and the same was officially announced on July 25 .

Following the confirmation of bird flu in West Bengal, awareness campaign has been launched all over the State by the Veterinary and Animal Husbandry Department.

Despite the ban on import of fowls from outside the State, reports have come in that chicks are being brought in through NH-53.Police have however stated that they have not detected any smuggling in.