Kuwait’s health ministry on confirmed outbreaks of the H5N1 strain of bird flu at a zoo and a farm in the south of the country, reported by Reuters.
“Kuwait banned on Sunday the entry of live birds after the discovery of the H5N1 virus,” Ahmed Al-Shattil, a health ministry official, said. “The public authority for food and agriculture conducted tests on falcons in the Wafra region and at the Kuwait Zoo, they found 20 infected with the virus”. Wafra is a farming area south of the capital.
Hundreds of thousands of birds in Asia died due to a virus that has been dubbed the “bird flu.” The highly contagious illness is responsible for wiping out large numbers of poultry in Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and Vietnam. The particular strain of influenza which has been reported as causing the deaths is called H5N1.
Humans can contract the disease through close contact with infected birds, or with the feces of infected birds. It is not known to spread through human-to-human contact. There has been no indication that humans would get the disease through eating eggs or meat of sick birds.
The only known way to eradicate the disease is by culling infected flocks. Thus far millions of chickens, ducks and other kinds of poultry have been culled in an effort to eliminate the virus.