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Switzerland ends preventive bird flu measures

GENEVA — Amid warmer temperatures and reduced avian migratory trends, Switzerland on Friday decided to put an end to precautionary measures seeking to prevent the propagation of the H5N8 bird flu strain in the country.
Coming into force on March 18, the new decision was taken given that most migratory birds have left their winter quarters and that the number of animals effected by the virus has dropped significantly across Europe, the Swiss Federal Food Safety and Veterinary Office (FSVO) explained in a statement.
Aquatic birds infected by the H5N8 avian flu strain were first documented in Switzerland in November 2016 on Lake Constance, located in northern parts of the landlocked confederation.
According to FSVO, 121 wild birds have been tested positive since then, though productive poultry has not recorded any infections from the highly pathogenic virus.
The last time a wild bird was diagnosed to have died from the virus was on Jan. 6 this year.
The World Health Organization warned in November last year that while the transmission of the H5N8 bird flu strain to human was unlikely, it should not be completely ruled out. (PNA)
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Last Modified: 2017-Sep-19 23.31.24 UTC+0800