Number of H5N6 bird flu cases rises to 15

Taipei--Three more cases of the highly pathogenic H5N6 avian influenza infection were confirmed Saturday, bringing the total number of H5N6 cases around the country to 15 since Feb. 6, when Taiwan reported its first case, according to statistics released Sunday by the Council of Agriculture.

The council's Bureau of Animal and Plant Health Inspection and Quarantine said the three confirmed new cases include one found on a chicken farm in Yunlin County, one on a goose farm in Chiayi County and the other involving ducks at a slaughter house in Yilan County.

As of Sunday, all the cases had been reported from poultry farms in Yunlin County, Chiayi County, Tainan, Yilan County and Hualien County.

The recent outbreaks of the highly pathogenic H5N6 bird flu virus has put the authorities on high alert because it is highly contagious and transmittable to humans.

As part of ongoing efforts to contain the spread of the disease, the COA has banned the transportation and slaughtering of poultry for seven days starting from Feb. 17.

The outbreaks have led to the culling of 7,955 birds, including 4,678 chickens, 2,690 ducks and 587 geese. In addition, 6,855 duck carcasses have been destroyed, according to the bureau.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel