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S. Korea investigating 4 more suspected cases of bird flu

All News 10:46 November 06, 2020

SEOUL, Nov. 6 (Yonhap) -- South Korea said Friday that it is looking into four suspected cases of avian influenza found from wild bird droppings.

The Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs said it could take about five days to determine whether the virus is a highly pathogenic strain of bird flu.

In October, South Korea reported two outbreaks of highly pathogenic H5N8 avian flu in Yongin, just south of Seoul, and the neighboring city of Cheonan, marking the first outbreak in 32 months.

South Korea later found two more suspected cases in the southwestern city of Gunsan and Yangju City, just north of Seoul, which were later found to be low pathogenic avian flu, according to the ministry.

Highly pathogenic avian flu is very contagious and can make poultry very sick and even cause death.

Quarantine officials have recently launched investigations at 10 major habitats for migratory birds and have bolstered preventive measures at nearby poultry farms.

The officials are carrying out thorough monitoring at more than 65,000 small-sized poultry farms in the country and have completed surveillance on around half of them.

S. Korea investigating 4 more suspected cases of bird flu - 1

Separately, South Korea said there have been no additional suspected cases of African swine fever from domestic pigs.

Authorities confirmed two ASF cases from Gangwon Province last month, marking the first outbreak of the animal disease since October 2019.

Last year, ASF swept through pig farms, prompting authorities to cull about 400,000 pigs nationwide as part of preventive measures. A total of 14 farms were infected.

ASF does not affect humans but is deadly to pigs. There is currently no vaccine or cure for the disease.

colin@yna.co.kr
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