Highly-pathogenic H5N6 avian influenza or bird flu has just been detected in the Philippines, Agriculture Secretary William Dar announced on Monday.
According to William Dar, bird flu was detected in a quail farm in Jaen, Nueva Ecija. Testing for avian influenza was done on March 13 after 1,500 out of 15,000 quails died in a farm in Barangay Ulanin-Pitak, he said, adding that samples from 30 live quails from the said farm tested positive for the disease.
A total of 12,000 quails from the said farm were “surgically stomped out” and buried on March 14.
Dar said infected quails may pass on the disease to humans through secretions. He added there has been no record of human transmission of bird flu in the Philippines when the same strain affected Pampanga and Nueva Ecija in 2017.
“The avian influenza is a disease of poultry that can affect humans. However, the H5N6 HPAI (highly-pathogenic avian influenza) which affected the Philippines has not affected humans in the country,” he said.
Dar said the Agriculture Department’s quick response fund will be used to combat the spread of the bird flu.