CFIA confirms presence of H5N1 virus in British Columbia and removal of quarantines from three farms
February 7, 2015
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is continuing its investigation into an outbreak of avian influenza in British Columbia's Fraser Valley. The CFIA has confirmed the presence of a high pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza virus on a non-commercial farm in Chilliwack, BC. The infected premises is under quarantine, depopulation of the affected birds has been completed and disposal measures are underway.
This is the first time the H5N1 strain of the virus has been detected during the current avian influenza outbreak in British Columbia's Fraser Valley. The other affected farms in BC were infected by the H5N2 strain.
The H5N1 strain was found in wild birds in Washington State in January 2015.
The CFIA applies the same disease control measures following detections of H5N1 and H5N2 avian influenza viruses.
This new infected premises reminds us that risks for new infections remain a concern. Monitoring and surveillance activities continue to be a very important part of controlling this outbreak. It is important that all bird owners have good biosecurity measures in place to protect their flocks from infection.
Avian influenza viruses do not pose risks to food safety when poultry and poultry products are properly handled and cooked.
As part of the ongoing efforts, quarantines for three premises located in Abbotsford, BC have been lifted.
It has been 21 days since the infected premises underwent the required cleaning and disinfection measures; therefore, the premises are now considered to be free of the disease.
It is important to note that the lifting of the quarantines will not change the boundaries within the Primary Control Zone, including the 10 km restricted zone.
Strict surveillance will continue in the area for 90 days after the last cleaning and disinfection is done to the satisfaction of the CFIA. If no additional cases of avian influenza are found within this period, the zone can be considered free of avian influenza.
For more information on avian influenza and measures poultry farmers can take to protect their flocks, please visit the CFIA web site at inspection.gc.ca.
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