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Bird flu epidemic breaks out in Delta



AN outbreak of Avian Influenza popularly known as bird flu has been reported in Delta State with poultry farmers already counting their losses after birds worth millions of naira were killed by the disease in just one week of the epidemic.

  A farmer in Ekrerhavwen-Agbarho in Ughelli North Local Government Area, Andrew Unutame, said his birds started dying last Saturday as a result of the epidemic with over 11,000 birds, including laying birds and the ones at the point of lay, lost in the last three days.

  According to Unutame, most of the farms in the state have been affected by the influenza which they had been trying to curtail in the last three months.

  “The bird flu is an airborne disease that kills birds on hourly basis. The first day we noticed, two birds died. Within the next one hour, five birds died, and then 10 and the mortality rate began to increase at a geometric progression. Presently, we are helpless because all measures to put the disease has so far failed. We have lost millions of naira to the outbreak of this disease and we don’t know how to come out of it presently. We are calling on the federal government, state government and relevant agencies of give to come to our aid by providing for us all that is necessary to tackle this problem, including financial assistance,” Unutame said.

  Delta State Commissioner for Agriculture, Julius Egbedi, confirmed the outbreak, saying that he would make a report to Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa.

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