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Zimbabwe on alert as another bird flu outbreak hits S/Africa

The Zimbabwe government is on high alert following another outbreak of bird flu in neighbouring South Africa, an official said on Wednesday.Veterinary services director Josphat Nyika said Zimbabwe has activated its response system in the wake of an announcement by South Africa that it has been hit by two new outbreaks of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza in the country’s North West province. 

He told state media that the latest outbreak was among wild birds. 

“In Zimbabwe we have reason to worry because these birds are the host of the disease and are migratory,” he said on Wednesday.

This is the second time that South Africa has been hit by an avian flu outbreak in less than a year.

Last year’s outbreak ironically started in Zimbabwe when a poultry farm near Harare had to be quarantined between May and August.

The country was only declared free of the disease in December.

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