Italy's summer of H5N8 outbreaks continues, with the OIE publishing a notification today listing 3 new outbreaks (#25, #26, and #27 of 2017), while their own IZSV (Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale delle Venezie) lists a 4th outbreak (see chart below) #28 - all in the Lombardy Region.
Outbreaks | PDF (last update: 07/08/2017)
Map | PDF (last update: 04/08/2017)
07/08/2017 – On 5 August, the National Reference Laboratory (NRL) for Avian Influenza and Newcastle Disease confirmed as positive for Avian Influenza A virus subtype H5N8 four different farms in Lombardy region.
Three of the new cases are fattening turkey farms in Mantua province with, 1) around 45.000 68 day-old meat turkeys, 2) about 18.000 82 day-old meat turkeys, 3) around 31.700 80 day-old meat turkeys. These three farms are inside the protection zone of an outbreak in a laying hens farm in Mantua province, confirmed on the 21st of July. The birds in the first farm, in contrast to the other two, did not exhibit any symptoms and samples were collected as part of the surveillance activities provided for the protection zone.
The fourth case was identified in a goose farm in Pavia province. At the moment of the epidemiological inquiry, there were 965 geese present at the farm. On 3 August, there was a decrease in the feed and water intake, an increase in mortality, and the birds started to show nervous symptoms. This farm is located about 50 km from the last confirmed case in wild birds (wild mallard ducks) confirmed on 2 August.
Over the past 5 weeks Italy has reported 12 HPAI H5N8 poultry outbreaks, along with one detection in wild ducks.
While bird flu activity remains low this summer across Europe, since June we've seen scattered reports of HPAI H5 cutting a swath across Luxembourg, Belgium, and just barely into northern France (see Belgium Reports Another Outbreak of HPAI H5N8), while the UK, Finland, and the Netherlands all reported single outbreaks.Today, in a related story, the UK reported the discovery of an infected mute swan found dead in North Norfolk (see OIE Notification), another reminder that the virus continues to circulate at low levels in wild birds, even during the summer.