Kerala government asks farmers to be alert against avian flu

Thiruvananthapuram, Oct 24 (IANS) After avian flu was reported in Delhi and Rajasthan, a high-level meeting here, chaired by Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, on Monday asked farmers in the state to keep a close watch on their poultry.

State Animal Husbandry Minister K. Raju said an emergency meeting of stake holders is being held on Tuesday at Alappuzha following reports that ducks in Thakazhi village in Alappuzha district were suspected to have been infected with the disease.

“Preventive measures are being taken and farmers should immediately report if there are unexpected deaths in sizeable numbers reported among ducks and hens,” said Raju.

Two years ago, thousands of ducks and hens were culled in Alappuzha, Kottayam and Pathanamthitta districts following the outbreak of avian flu which was then confirmed as H5N1 virus.