One Year Of Qinghai
H5N1 Bird Flu Migration

By Dr. Henry L. Niman, PhD
The recent reports of H5N1 in bar headed geese in Gangcha and Yushu counties in Qinghai province mark the one year cycle of the spread of the Qinghai strain of H5N1. Below is a list of OIE reports filed in countries for the first time (with the exception of China) in the past 12 months. One year ago reported cases of H5N1 were limited to China and countries in Asia to the east and southeast of China.
The introduction of H5N1 into new countries is chronologically listed below, based on the date of the first outbreak in that country. The Qinghai H5N1 infections are somewhat larger than listed below because outbreaks in areas near prior H5N1 reports have been excluded because the new outbreaks may be due to another H5N1 strain. The countries below have reported Qinghai sequences or are adjacent to countries that have reported Qinghai sequences. Countries reporting Qinghai sequences are in bold.
The initial outbreak started in mid-April, but was first reported on May 9, 2005 and involved 189 bar headed geese at Qinghai Lake. 519 dead birds were described in the May 21 OIE report and the following months there were outbreaks on farms in Xinjiang. It is likely that many subsequent outbreaks in Xinjiang were the Qinghai strain, but only the Liaoning outbreak has been confirmed as the Qinghai strain. Human cases in China in late 2005 and early 2006 have been due to the Fujian strain, which was also found in Laos and Malaysia in 2006, so much of eastern Asia has several H5N1 strains co-circulating.
However, the countries listed below are all almost certainly infected with the Qinghai strain. None of these countries had previously reported an Asian strain of H5N1 and the reports followed the timing and path of migratory birds known t be infected with the Qinghai strain of H5N1.
The data below is from OIE reports, but is clearly an underestimate of the true spread and the number of species infected. Russia filed an OIE report that included two dozen species that were shot by hunters and were H5N1 positive (wild duck, laughing gull, rook, northern stover, crow, pigeon, sandpiper, oyster catcher, little grebe. black-winged stilt, phalatrope, little tern, pied wagtail, green sandpiper, white headed plover, starling, coot, mallard sparrow hawk, buzzard, turtle dove, garganey, teal). In addition, the Minister of Agriculture site indicated there had been H5N1 outbreaks in southern Russia in Astrakhan, Rostov, Kalmykia, Adygeya, North Ossetia, Kabardino-Balkaria, Chechnya, and Stavropol. Moreover, H5N1 was still present in Dagestan, Krasnodar and Volgograd,
Thus, the list below shows where H5N1 has been reported in OIE filings, but the data is more informative about overall surveillance and lack thereof. The positive reports including a wide range of species that are in countries in the major flyways linked to the massive outbreak in southern Siberia in the summer of 2005. Because of the number of infected species and number of positive reports, it is likely that adjacent countries are also H5N1 positive and in countries where wild birds are not included, it is likely that those wild birds are also infected.
Countries with the poorest surveillance are those that are adjacent to H5N1 positive countries, but are still deny H5N1 infections. Also near the bottom of the surveillance list are countries which failed to detect H5N1 in wild birds, even after domestic poultry was H5N1 infected. Next are countries who could only detect H5N1 in mute swans. H5N1 is easily detected in mute swans, but the transmission of H5N1 is generally by other species which are migratory. Next are countries which detected H5N1 in wild birds, but failed to detect H5N1 in healthy wild birds, The only country to detect H5N1 in healthy wild birds has been Russia.
As H5N1 transmission begin a second season of transmissions, it will be of interest to see how sequences have changed and how easily the infections are detected on the second season of spread.
April 15 China (Qinghai, Xinjiang, Liaoning) bar-headed geese, great black headed gulls, brown headed gulls, ruddy shelducks, great cormorants, geese, ducks
July 15 Russia (Novosibirsk, Altai Territory, Chelyabinsk, Kurgan, Omsk, Tiumen, Tula, Kalmykia, Astrakhan, Tambov, Krasnodarsky) geese, ducks, turkeys, chickens, wild swans, guinea fowl, Muscovy ducks, quail, wild ducks, crows
July 22 Kazakhstan (Pavlodar, Mangghystau) wild swans, geese
August 2 Mongolia (Alag-Ederne, Saikhan) bar-headed goose, whooper swan
October 1 Turkey (Balikesir, Igdir, Agri, Ankara, Bitlis, Bursa, Ezurum, S. Urfa, Yozgat, Aydin, Erzincan, Istanbul, Van, Ardahan, Batman, Diyarbakir, Elazog, Isparta, Izmir, Karabuk, Karaman, Kars, Konya, Malataya, Mugla, Mus, Samsun, Siirt, Sivas, Gaziantep, Akasaray, Burdur, Sinop, Edirne, Ordu, Rize, Tokat) turkeys, chickens, geese, ducks, pigeon, swan, sparrow, cormorant, wild duck, hawk, gull
October 7 Romania (Tulcea, Brailia, Buzau, Calarasi, Constanta, Dambovita, Dolj, Ialomita, Ilfov) laying hens, ducks, pheasant, pigeon, guinea fowl, turkeys, mute swans
October 19 Croatia (Zagreb, Splitsko-Dalmatinska, Osijecko-Baranjska) black headed gulls, swans
November 25 Ukraine (Ukraine, Odessa) chickens, ducks, turkeys, geese, pigeon, crow, magpie, jay, thrush, cormorant, pochard, owl, falcon, scops owl, pheasant, kestrel, peacock, Niles goose, brent goose, pelican
January 10 Nigeria (Kaduna, Kano, Plateau, Bauchi, Federal Capital Territory, Katsina, Nasarawa, Yobe, Anambra, Benuw, River, Jigawa, Lagos, Ogun) poultry layers, broilers, cockerels, ducks, Guinea-fowl, free range birds, wild vulture, ostriches, emus, Chinese geese, black crowned cranes
January 18 Iraq (Sulaimaniyah, Missan) chickens, geese, turkeys, ducks, pigeons
January 27 India (Maharashtra, Gujarat) chickens
January 30 Greece (Central Macedonia) swans
January 31 Bulgaria (Vidin) mute swan
February 1 Italy (Calabria, Puglia, Sicilia, Umbria) mute swans, sultan, buzzard, wild duck
February 4 Hungary (Bacs-Kiskun) mute swans
February 6 Germany (Mechlenburg-Vorpornmern, Mecklemburg-Western Pomerania, Bavaria, Brandenburg, Baden Wurttemberg, Berlin, Lower Saxony, Schleswig-Holstein, Sachsen) mute swan, whooper swans, goshawk, falcons, wild ducks, gulls, terns, coot, turkeys
February 11 Slovenia (Podravska, Maribor) mute swan, grey heron, northern pintail
February 13 France (Ain) pochards, whooper swans, wild duck, heron, tufted duck, mute swans, buzzard, barnacle goose, great crested grebe
February 13 Austria (Graz-Urngebung) swans
February 16 Albania (Vlore) chicken, turkeys
February 16 Bosnia Herzegovina (Srednjobanski) swans
February 17 Egypt (Cairo, Giza, Menia, Quena, Qualiubia, Behera, Dakahlia, Kabula, Bemi Suef, Kahr el Shiekh, Qina, Fayourn, Dommiata, Sharkia, Louxor, Monifa, Sohag, Alexandrai, Ismailia) chickens, turkeys, geese, ducks, breeders, broilers, layers, pigeons, peacocks, migratory birds
February 21 Cameroon (Northernmost) domestic ducks
February 22 Azerbaijan (Khyzy, Biljasuvar, Agdam) poultry, duck
February 22 Iran (Rasht) swans
February 23 Georgia (Adjara) swans
February 23 Niger (Zinder) poultry (all breeds)
February 23 Pakistan (North West Frontier) layer, breeder
February 24 Sweden (Bleking, Sodermanland, Gotland, Kalmar) mallard, tufted ducks, greater scaup
February 26 Switzerland (Geneva, Thurgau, Schaffhausen, Zurich) goosander, tufted duck, common coot, common pochard, little grebe, ducks
March 1 Burkina Faso (Kadiogo) helmeted guineafowl
March 2 Afghanistan (Jalalabad, Kabul, Laghman, Vardak, Kunar) chicken, turkeys, crow
March 2 Poland (Torunski, Gorzowski, Swinoujscie, Torunski, Bydgoski, Grudziadski) wild swans, goosander, hawk
March 9 Seria and Montenegro (Zlatiborski) rooster, mute swan
March 12 Denmark (Storstroem, Bornholm, Frederiksberg, Funen, South Jutland, Western Zealand, North Eastern Zealand) common buzzards, mute swans, rough legged buzzard, tufted ducks, peregrine falcon, greylag goose, great crested grebe, whooper swans,
March 16 Israel (HaDarom, Jesuralem, Jehuda & Samaria, Jerusalem) turkeys, broilers, heavy breeders
March 20 Czech Republic (Southern Bohemia) mute swan
March 21 Palestine Autonomous Territories (Gaza Middle, North, South) layers, breeders, broilers, ducks
March 23 Jordan (Ajloun) turkeys
March 25 Sudan (Khartoum, Gezira) poultry (closed and backyard)
March 30 Cote D,Ivoire (Lagunes) chickens, ducks, sparrow hawk
March 30 United Kingdom (Scotland) whooper swan
April 23 China (Qinghai) bar headed geese, brown headed gull, ruddy shelduck
Patricia A. Doyle DVM, PhD
Bus Admin, Tropical Agricultural Economics
Univ of West Indies
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