Since 23 December 2021, more than 1,050 new high pathogenicity avian influenza (HPAI) virus outbreaks were reported in domestic and wild birds across Europe, Asia, Africa, and North America. Based on recent reports, current H5 HPAI circulating in the northern hemisphere has been detected in apparently healthy wild birds, and it has also contributed to a number of substantial wild bird mortality events.
The current widespread and frequent detection HPAI viruses in the northern hemisphere likely represents an increased level of risk to Australia.
If you suspect avian influenza in birds within New South Wales, report it immediately on the Emergency Animal Disease Watch Hotline on 1800 675 888.
Veterinarians can submit bird samples to the Elizabeth Macarthur Agricultural Institute laboratory for avian influenza testing.
Avian influenza (AI) is an infectious disease of birds caused by an influenza virus. The AI virus is not the same as the human influenza virus that normally causes seasonal influenza in humans, particularly in winter. There are many different subtypes of the AI virus and only rarely do any of these subtypes affect humans.
AI can infect a wide range of birds including chickens, turkeys, quails, guinea fowl, partridges, pheasants, emus, ostriches, and a large number of aviary and wild birds, especially waterfowl such as ducks, geese and swans.
AI is a notifiable disease under NSW legislation. There is a legal obligation to notify authorities if you know or suspect that birds are infected with this disease.
You can notify by phoning: