This Article is From Oct 22, 2016

Gwalior Zoo Shut After Bird Deaths Confirm New Bird Flu Virus

Gwalior Zoo Shut After Bird Deaths Confirm New Bird Flu Virus

The Gwalior zoo is shut for visitors till further notice.

Gwalior: The Gwalior zoo will be shut for visitors starting today after reports confirmed that the death of 15 birds over the last three days were due to a new bird flu virus.

The central government said a new bird flu virus subtype H5N8 has been confirmed in 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 this 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 H5 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.

Earlier this week, NIHSAD had confirmed that the virus subtype H5N8 infection in wild birds, which is a new subtype, is being reported for the first time in the country.

H5N8 has been reported from 11 countries during 2015 and four countries (including India) during 2016.

The statement said avian influenza disease in wild/ migratory birds does not affect the status of the country and hence there are no trade implications.