Maharashtra: 289 more birds found dead, tally 18,700

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Mumbai, Jan 26 (PTI) The tally of bird deaths in Maharashtra reached 18,700 with 289 more birds dying in various parts of the state on Monday, a state government official said on Tuesday.

The samples of these birds have been sent to the Bhopal-based laboratory to find out whether they were infected by avian influenza pathogen, he said.

'Out of these 289 birds, 260 were poultry birds while others are herons, parrots, crows etc,' the official said.

He said 51,090 poultry birds, eight ducks, 38,798 eggs and 55,476 kg poultry feed have been destroyed until now in the infected zones in Maharashtra.

Bird flu outbreak was confirmed in some districts of Maharashtra earlier this month.

'Culling of poultry birds, destruction of eggs, droppings, manure, feed etc has been initiated in the radii of one-km around the infected poultry farms,' he said.

Culling is basically the mass slaughter of domestic poultry birds, such as chickens and ducks, to contain the spread of bird flu. During this process, all domestic birds in an infected area, where cases of bird flu have been reported, are slaughtered and their remains are buried. PTI ND NSK NSK