Zimbabwe Farmers' Union

Zim poultry industry under threat

21 Jun 2017

Over 140,000 birds were culled due to avian influenza, a disease caused by infection with avian (bird) influenza (flu) type A viruses which naturally occurs among wild aquatic birds.

Major poultry producer, Irvines Private limited’s white meat and egg sub sector was last week put under quarantine following an outbreak of Avian influenza which killed 7000 chickens and the slaughtering of 140,000 birds to prevent the spread of the disease.

This highly contagious avian virus normally infects aquatic birds in their intestines and respiratory tract.

Migrating water fowl most notably wild ducks are the natural carriers of bird flu viruses; the infection can spread from wild fowl to domestic poultry.

Ministry of Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development’s Department of Livestock and Veterinary Services Principal Director, Dr Unesu Ushewokunze Obatolu said,” Poultry keeping enterprises are urged to enhance their bio-security measures to promote tight and continuous separation from wild birds, while the exact source, thought to be wild ducks and geese in a nearby waterbody is being investigated”.

Download a fact sheet on Aviana Influenza Virus for more information