Maharashtra has found two parrots and a few cranes dead, Bird deaths could be due to multiple reasons; therefore, the pathology samples have been sent to the animal disease investigation lab at Pune, said Anoop Kumar, Principal Secretary of Animal Husbandry Department. In the stir of several reports of poultry, crows, migratory bird deaths in as many as five states, the other states are stepping up vigil to monitor bird movements and unusual deaths in forest areas.
On Thursday, nearly 400 birds were found dead in Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat while 150 crows were found dead in Jammu’s Udhampur district. Though, their cause of death is yet to be ascertained. While at least four crows were found dead at a school in Jhansi. Though lab tests ruled out avian influenza or bird flu in this case. Earlier, the Centre held a meeting with the states to understand the status of the outbreak of avian influenza and to suggest measures to states/UTs for control and prevent the spread of the disease. So far, avian deaths have been reported from Kerala, Haryana, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, and Himachal Pradesh.
In Himachal Pradesh, around 1,800 migratory birds, most of them bar-headed geese, have been found dead in the Pong Dam Lake sanctuary. In Rajasthan, deaths of more than 170 new birds were reported from some districts on Monday, taking the total fatalities in recent days to over 425. In Indore, 152 crows were found dead and bird flu was confirmed in 12 crows.
The Secretary, Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Government of India in an official release said, effective coordination with the state forest departments was also emphasized for immediate reporting of any unusual mortalities in non-domestic birds in forest areas and around water bodies.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Environment said there are no reports of humans being infected through the disease is zoonotic. There is no direct evidence that Avian Influenza viruses can be transmitted to humans via the consumption of contaminated poultry products. Given the rising cases of an avian flu outbreak among the country’s bird population, the Maharashtra Government is on maximum alert. Many migratory bird sites, including one near the Ujani dam in the Solapur district, are being monitored.