With the arrival of cooler fall temperatures we are starting to see an uptick in avian flu reports across the northern hemisphere. In addition to the H5N1 report out of India this morning, we have a report of LPAI H7N3 at a municipal park in Germany.
There are two broad categories of avian influenza; LPAI (Low Pathogenic Avian Influenza) and HPAI (Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza).
- LPAI viruses are quite common in wild birds, cause little illness, and only rarely death. They are not considered to be a serious threat to public health, although H5 & H7 strains have the potential to mutate into HPAI strains.
- HPAI viruses are more dangerous, can produce high morbidity and mortality in wild birds and poultry, and can sometimes infect humans with serious result. The number of HPAI viruses that scientists have been tracking has increased markedly over the past 3 years, and now includes H5N1, H5N2, H5N6, H5N8,H10N8, and others.
The concern with these LPAI H5 and H7 viruses is that when they are not controlled - they have the potential to mutate into highly pathogenic strains.
Although Reuters and several German media outlets are reporting on the detection of LP H7N3 in Mannheim, the greatest detail can be found in the notice posted by Luisenpark on their website.
Found Gering contagious form of bird flu at two pheasants in Mannheim
The Veterinary Office of the City of Mannheim has found an outbreak of low pathogenic form of avian influenza (H7 N 3) in two aviaries birds of Mannheim Luisenpark on 10/18/2016.
After a routine two have died in an inaccessible for visitors aviary of Mannheim Luisenpark pheasants at the Chemical and Veterinary Investigation Office Karlsruhe suspected bird flu returned. The finding was confirmed on 17.10.2016 by the national reference laboratory of the Friedrich Loeffler Institute (Federal Research Institute for Tiergesundheit- on Riems). It is an influenza virus of the subtype H 7 N 3 with little pathogenic effect.
The Mannheim veterinary authority has arranged promptly in close collaboration with the City Park Mannheim gGmbH all necessary animal health measures to prevent a possible spread of infection.
So the killing of directly with the dead animals came into contact holdings (6 pheasants, 26 ducks, peacocks 2) was in agreement with the competent Ministry of Rural Affairs and Consumer Protection Baden-Württemberg has. All birds killed are examined. Furthermore, the bird conversations were blocked for a period of at least 6 weeks to visitors and the animals stabled as far as possible, that is spent in closed stables.
The rest of the park Luis remains freely accessible to the public.
The Mannheim veterinary authority is sampled immediately the other held bird population in the aviaries of Luis parks to determine whether and to what extent yet spread exists. This laboratory diagnostic tests may be performed using fecal swabs on living animals and need to be repeated at intervals of at least 21 days.
Since the events so far focused exclusively on two birds in Luisenpark, citizens in relation to note any additional precautions in principle to the contact with birds. The increased incidence of dead wild birds must be reported to the Veterinary Authority, as an entry of the disease from wild birds can not be excluded. Basically dead birds must be handled only with gloves.
The Department of Health classifies the hazard in this particular case to be extremely low because a transfer of the encountered virus' to humans is very unlikely. Citizens should avoid when visiting the parks Luis precaution direct contact with wild birds and their excreta.
Citizens can come up with questions to the veterinary services to the Department of safety and order by calling 293 - call 25 25th Otherwise, the city administration Mannheim information under https://www.mannheim.de/stadt-gestalten/verbraucherschutz-gesunde-lebensmittel-sichere-dienstleistungen-tierschutz available that are updated course when necessary.