Avian influenza (bird flu)
Updated: 21 Dec 2012
An outbreak of H7 Avian Influenza virus in a flock of layer hens near Maitland has been successfully controlled. The affected property has been destocked and decontaminated and no further signs of the disease have been found anywhere in NSW.
The Department of Primary Industries has lifted all restrictions on the movement of birds and bird products in the Maitland area following comprehensive testing which has shown no further signs of avian influenza in the area.
This was not the highly pathogenic H5N1 strain that has gained worldwide attention – nor was it closely related to that strain. Australia has previously had a small number of outbreaks of AI viruses and all were quickly and successfully eradicated.
The NSW Food Authority has further advice.
Avian influenza, also known as 'bird flu', is an infectious disease of birds, which can also affect humans in rare cases. While there is no evidence that bird flu is affecting birds or humans in Australia at the present time, there have been a number of recent cases of the more serious strain of the virus (H5N1) in some Asian countries and parts of Europe.
To help people working in agriculture and the general community better understand bird flu, and what measures are being taken to help protect the NSW poultry industry and birds in general, a series of fact sheets have been prepared along with a series of commonly asked questions and answers.
- Avian influenza (AI) - questions and answers
- Avian Influenza (bird flu): biosecurity for bird owners
- Avian influenza (bird flu): human health facts
- Avian influenza (bird flu): poultry and bird facts
- Avian Influenza (bird flu): wild bird facts
- Precautions for handling dead wild birds
- Biosecurity guidelines for egg producers
- NSW biosecurity guidelines for free range poultry farms
- Biosecurity tips for bird shows
- Poultry health - keeping diseases out
- Swift action eradicates Avian Influenza at Maitland egg farm [21 Nov 2012]
- Avian Influenza confirmed at Hunter Valley egg farm [15 Nov 2012]
- Authorities respond to suspect NSW Avian Influenza case [15 Nov 2012]
Emergency Animal Disease Watch Hotline
- 1800 675 888
Unusual disease signs, abnormal behaviour or unexplained deaths in livestock that may be due to an emergency animal disease can be reported on this number.