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Bird Flu Confirmed in the Netherlands

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On the night of Friday 25 November 2016, Wageningen Bioveterinary Research (WBVR) confirmed an outbreak of H5 avian influenza (bird flu) on a duck farm in Biddinghuizen (municipality of Dronten). The birds on this farm, at three other locations belonging to the same concern in Hierden and one location in Ermelo, were humanely destroyed as a preventive measure. Some 180,000 ducks were culled. 

In addition, birds at another farm with 10,000 ducks were destroyed because they were within a one-kilometre radius of the affected farm in Biddinghuizen. A follow-up examination on Saturday showed that the virus is the highly contagious and pathogenic H5N8 virus.

Three other farms are located within a three-kilometre radius of the affected farm in Biddinghuizen. Samples have been taken for examination. 

Commercial poultry farms throughout Europe are currently being hit by bird flu. Unfortunately, a ban on keeping poultry outdoors combined with tighter biosecurity measures have not been enough to prevent the virus from spreading to poultry farms in the Netherlands. 

Wageningen Bioveterinary Research (WBVR, previously known as Central Veterinary Institute, CVI) in Lelystad is the designated institute for diagnosing Avian Influenza or classic bird flu. The institute carries out laboratory tests to check for the virus and conducts diagnostic tests on poultry samples from farms where bird flu is suspected and on dead wild waterfowl. The aim is to identify the disease as soon as possible before carrying out extra controls on poultry in the immediate vicinity.


Story from Wageningen University. Please note: The content above may have been edited to ensure it is in keeping with Technology Networks’ style and length guidelines.