“Bird Flu Is Back In Nigeria” – Anambra State Government Warns


The Government of Anambra State alerts the general public about the return of Bird Flu in some states across the country. Also called Avian Influenza, the disease which is associated with birds can also be transmitted from bird to man through direct contact with infected birds or poultry materials.

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The first case of bird flu in Nigeria was recorded in 2007, which tagged the country as the first in the world to have a causality case of the virus. Since then there had been several re-occurrence of bird flu in the country, but the last recorded episode was in January 2015. The Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, had confirmed the outbreak in eleven states of the federation – Kano,  Lagos , Ogun, Rivers, Delta,  Edo , Plateau, Gombe, Imo, Oyo and Jigawa.

That outbreak was handled with immediate effect and it fizzled out without causing massive loss of lives. The Federal Government of Nigeria quickly identified and depopulated 39 farms affected by the flu in those states and approved N145 million for the owners of the farms as compensation for the loss they suffered due to the depopulation of their birds.

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Bird Flu

Meanwhile, the Federal Ministry of Health is still trying to battle an epidemic virus, Lassa, that sneaked back into the country late last year. Lassa fever was first confirmed in Bornu state and so far the death toll has risen to 41 from 93 suspected cases, over the last couple of weeks. With the possible return of Bird flu, Nigerians are advised to take precautions so that they or/and their loved ones do not get caught up with the virus.

Anambra State Authorities:

The Symptoms of the disease include fever, sneezing, cough, diarrhea, trouble breathing, general ill feeling, muscle aches, runny nose and sore throat. Members of the public are by this announcement advised to observe personal hygiene, and to wash their hands with soap and clean water after contact with birds and poultry product.

They should also ensure that all poultry meat and eggs are thoroughly cooked before eating. All poultry farmers in the state are also advised to clean their surroundings, and to report cases of sick birds to the nearest veterinary clinic.

Similarly all veterinary officers in the state are by this announcement requested to commence surveillance/sensitization visits particularly at Live-bird markets in the state to avoid the contact and spread of the flu.


Dr. Barr. Mrs UjuNwogu

Hon Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism.

However, people who do not regularly have contact with birds are not at high risk of contracting the influenza. Poultry farm workers, animal control workers, wildlife biologists, and ornithologists who handle live birds stand at higher risks of catching and spreading the virus. These organizations are advised to have in place an avian influenza response plan in preparation of any new case.

It is also important for poultry flocks to have Bio-security for prevention of outbreak. Flocks should be isolated from outside birds, especially wild birds, and their waste; vehicles used around the flock should be regularly disinfected and not shared between farms. Just like in the past, with these precautions strictly adhered to, bird flu would be kicked out of Nigeria for good.

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