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Cyprus

New case of avian disease detected

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A fresh case of Newcastle Disease Virus (NDV) has been detected by veterinary services at a poultry farm outside Nicosia, authorities said on Friday.

Authorities have quarantined the Kokkinotrimithia unit and its 12,500 birds will all be examined for traces of the virus, deputy head of veterinary services Andreas Papaefstathiou told the Cyprus Mail.

“Our tests should show which birds have been affected and we hope that we will not be forced to cull all 12,500,” he said.

He added that all the poultry farms in the area will be checked to see if any other birds have been affected.

A three-kilometre perimeter has been set-up around the unit, including the villages of Mammari, Denia, Akaki and Paliometocho.

Authorities will also be keeping an eye on poultry farms in a 10-kilometre radius that includes Meniko, Akaki, Ayious Trimithias, Yerolakkos, Mammari, Katokopia, Avlona, Peristerona and Orounta.

NDV is a contagious avian disease affecting wild and domestic species and was first found in three other farms in the Kokkinotrimithia farming zone in June.

It was later detected in poultry in the village of Prodromi in the Paphos district.

About 50,000 poultry died from NDV, and a further 190,000 were culled – mostly in the Nicosia district farms.

Authorities reported the incidents on June 20, after the European Union’s UK-based Newcastle Disease reference laboratory confirmed the virus had been detected.

About a month later, on July 19, agriculture minister Nicos Kouyialis said the virus was under control.

There were no further reported outbreaks before Thursday.

Cyprus has applied for EU aid to offset part of the costs of the outbreak, estimated at €680,000. Some 20 per cent of chickens in Cyprus were affected by the virus and consumption fell by 30 per cent, as the public avoided chicken and turned to other meats.

Risk to the public from NDV is minimal as humans are not susceptible to the virus even when meat from diseased poultry is consumed.

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