96 more birds found dead in Maha; samples sent for analysis

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Mumbai, Feb 1 (PTI) Maharashtra has reported deaths of 96more birds, most of them poultry birds, amid the avian influenza scare, the state government said on Monday.

Their samples are being sent to the National Institute of High Security Animal Diseases (NIHSAD), Bhopal and Disease Investigation Section, Pune, for testing to ascertain the cause of the death of these birds on Sunday, it said.

According to an official statement, 77 of these were poultry birds.

The government said 15 crows and four otherbirds, including herons and parrots, also died on Sunday.

Samples of poultry birds from Mahape and Ghansoli in Thane district, sent earlier for analysis, were found positive for avian influenza, the statement said.

Maharashtra has recorded deaths of 19,923 birdssince January 8, the statement said.

The samples are being sent to National Institute of High Security Animal Diseases (NIHSAD) in Bhopal and Disease Investigation Section, Pune for testing, the government said.

On January 30, the results of the testing of samples were received from the NIHSAD, Bhopal and the poultry birds samples from Thane district at Mahape and Ghansoli were found positive for avian influenza, it said.

The government, however, did not specify the number of samples received from the Bhopal-based institute.

So far, 72,106 poultrybirds; 44,686 eggs and 63,339 kg poultry feed have been destroyed from infected zones in the state, the government said.

To avoid the spread of infection, carcasses are put in a gunny sack and buried in a ditch lined with a layer of lime.

The government has sanctioned a compensation package of Rs 1.30 crore for culling of poultry and other birds, and destroying eggs and poultry feed, and to cover cost of disease control within 1 km radius of an infected area under the Bird FluDisease Control Programme, the statement said. PTI ENM RSY RSY