NEWS / 20 FEBRUARY 2018, 10:32AM / LISA ISAACS
While there have been no new avian flu infections in the commercial poultry sector, the disease has been detected in other seabird species.
Economic Opportunities MEC Alan Winde yesterday confirmed that further incidents of the highly pathogenic H5N8 avian flu had been found in seabird populations in the province.
Seven cases of infected African penguins from six different sites across the provincial coastline were detected.
“Due to the status of African penguins as endangered, a decision to treat infected birds has been taken.
“Treatment protocols are similar to those for flu in humans - appropriate nutrition, hydration, vitamins, and the administration of anti-inflammatory drugs or antibiotics for any secondary infections,” Winde said.
Of the seven cases, one has survived.
No new cases were reported in the commercial poultry sector since October.
“The management authorities of all major sea bird colonies around the coastline are monitoring their zones closely.
"All necessary precautionary protocols to contain the spread of the disease have been implemented and extended surveillance and collaboration across sectors is assisting with further epidemiological evaluations,” Winde said.
CapeNature chief executive Razeena Omar said: “CapeNature is working closely with the state vet and has put procedures in place to monitor the virus and restrict the spread by humans between infected and non-infected areas”.