Bird flu lock-up for poultry in March
14 February 2006 , BRUSSELS — A compulsory lock-up order for poultry in Belgium will be re-introduced in coming weeks as the spring bird migratory season approaches.
14 February 2006
BRUSSELS — A compulsory lock-up order for poultry in Belgium will be re-introduced in coming weeks as the spring bird migratory season approaches.
The Federal Food Agency said poultry will only be allowed outside for a couple more weeks before being ordered back inside.
The measure is designed to ward off an out break of the bird flu virus in Belgium.
The agency has not decided on an exact date, but it is being speculated that the lock-up order will be re-imposed on 1 March.
"Belgium is still busy with the designation of sensitive nature areas. We will publicise these later this week," agency spokesman Pascal Houbaert said.
Belgian poultry owners will then have about two weeks in which to shield their birds from migrating wild birds.
The Netherlands will re-introduce its poultry lock-up order next week on request from poultry farmers, broadcaster VRT reported on Tuesday.
Germany was planning to impose the lock-up on 1 March, but will bring this forward now that a swan carrying the dangerous H5N1 strain of the bird flu virus has been found dead near the Austrian-Slovenian border.
Meanwhile, the federal food agency said on Monday tests have confirmed that a dead, domesticated swan found in Lommel in Limburg was not infected with the avian flu virus.
The agency said the tests were conducted by the Centre for Research in Veterinary Science and Agricultural Chemistry (CODA).
[Copyright Expatica News 2006]
Subject: Belgian news