- Indonesia was investigating the deaths of dozens of backyard
chickens on the resort island of Bali Wednesday [26 Oct 2005] amid fears
they may have had bird flu, officials and residents said.
- "It's too early to say if this is bird flu,"
said Ida Bagus Raka, the chief of Bali provincial animal husbandry agency,
after visiting Padang Sambian, a village on the outskirts of the provincial
capital of Denpasar.
- Though villagers say more than 25 previously healthy
birds have dropped dead in the last 5 days, Raka said it is possible they
had Newcastle Disease, which is not dangerous to humans.
- Samples have been sent to a lab for testing, he said.
It was not immediately clear when the results would come back.
- Residents in Padang Sambian said their backyard chickens
suddenly started falling sick last week, turning blue and frothing at the
beak before dying.
- "We don't know what the cause is, but we're afraid,"
said Ni Komang Santini, who has lost 8 of her 9 chickens. The same thing
happened to several of her neighbors' flocks, she said.
- The H5N1 strain of the bird flu has killed or forced
the slaughter of millions of birds in Indonesia since 2003, including 600
000 chickens on Bali last year.
- It has also jumped to humans killing 4 people in the
sprawling archipelago since June, although none of them on the resort island.
- Results of the current laboratory tests from Bali are
- According to Indonesia's official reports to the OIE,
the last outbreak of clinical HPAI in avians occurred in Indonesia on 4
May 2005, in the village Ujung Padang, Sumatra Utara (Follow-up report
No 9 of 27 Jun 2005; see http://www.oie.int/eng/info
/hebdo/AIS_64.HTM#Sec5. Though human cases have been reported later,
only serological findings from asymptomatic avians have been reported in
the last available follow-up report No 10, dated 2 Aug 2005 http://www.oie.int/eng/info/hebdo/AIS_59.HTM#Sec2.
- In view of the appearance of cases in humans, it is conceivable
that cases in avians do occur but remain undetected, underlining the need
for enhanced surveillance and reporting. - Mod. AS.
- Patricia A. Doyle, PhD
Please visit my "Emerging
Diseases" message board.
- Zhan le Devlesa tai sastimasa
Go with God and in Good Health