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Bird flu returns to Europe as France becomes the latest country to find H5N8 avian influenza in wild ducks


France

Bird flu returns to Europe as France becomes the latest country to find H5N8 avian influenza in wild ducks

Cases of H5N8 bird flu have been detected in wild ducks in Northern France amid a recent outbreak of the disease in Europe.

France, Europe’s largest poultry producer, is still recovering from a severe epidemic which lead to a total halting of duck and goose production in the south-west of the country in January.

“We’ve seen that there have been cases of wild birds contaminating domestic poultry,” said Loic Evain of the French Agriculture Ministry. “It’s a risk that we clearly can’t rule out. That’s why it’s very important all the farmers’ protection measures are taken to avoid the transfer of the virus from the wild to our livestock.”

Outbreaks in neighbouring countries including the Netherlands, Switzerland and Germany prompted the ministry to impose additional precautions at farms and restrict hunting and bird gathering earlier this month.

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