Japan Confirms This Season's 1st Bird Flu Outbreak

Politics Society

Akita/Tokyo, Nov. 10 (Jiji Press)--The Akita prefectural government said Wednesday that bird flu infections believed to be from a highly pathogenic virus have been confirmed at a chicken farm in the city of Yokote in the northeastern Japan prefecture.

It is the first time that an avian influenza outbreak has been confirmed in the nation this season. All of some 143,000 chickens at the farm will be culled. The prefecture has requested the dispatch of Self-Defense Forces troops for help.

According to the prefectural government, a local livestock hygiene center received a report Tuesday that a number of chickens had died at the farm. After a simple bird flu test showed positive results in some of the dead birds, the prefectural government found through a genetic test that the virus is believed to be highly pathogenic.

Some 190 birds died at the farm between Monday and Tuesday, and the virus was detected from 12 of them, the prefecture said. The prefectural government banned six farms within a 10-kilometer radius of the affected facility from transferring their chickens and eggs.

In the wake of the bird flu outbreak, the Japanese government held a meeting of relevant cabinet ministers Wednesday morning, with the participants agreeing to take all possible measures to prevent any further spread of infections.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press