This Article is From Oct 22, 2016

After Bird Flu Deaths, Gwalior Zoo May Cull 12 Painted Storks

The Gandhi Zoological Park in Gwalior after the painted storks' deaths. (Representational image)

Gwalior: Gwalior Zoo may cull its flock of painted storks after it was found that the 15 birds which had died in the last 72 hours had avian influenza.

Following the deaths, the Gwalior zoo was closed to the public and authorities have decided to cull the remaining 12 painted storks. They will now need the permission of wildlife authority to carry out the culling.

The central government said the new strain of bird flu virus H5N8 which has been confirmed in the samples from Gandhi Zoological Park, Gwalior.

National Institute for High Security Animal Diseases (NIHSAD) has said that the samples were received from Gandhi Zoological Park, Gwalior which have tested positive for H5N8 AIV, Ministry of Agriculture said in a statement.

Following the directive of Gwalior Municipal Corporation Commissioner Anay Dwivedi on Friday evening, the zoo was closed till further order, Shrivastava said, adding that spraying (of disinfectant) and cleaning was underway.

The report comes days after Delhi government shut the National Zoological Park in the wake of avian influenza. On Wednesday, the Delhi government announced shutting down of the National Zoological Park for the next three days in the wake of the death of nine water birds due to avian influenza.

Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries has asked Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change to issue advisories to all wildlife/bird sanctuaries in the country.

Till now, no human infections with H5N8 has been established anywhere in the world. However, necessary precautions are to be undertaken while handling sick/dead birds and contaminated material during control and containment operations, it said.