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In China, Migrant Birds Die from Bird Flu in Droves

Posted July. 07, 2005 02:29,   


It was reported that some 1,500 migrant birds died from bird flu in Qinghai Lake, China’s largest lake.

Scientists warn that the bird flu virus could rapidly spread across the world by spreading among migrant birds.

“Nature” and “Science”, the world-renowned science magazines of the U.K. and the U.S., respectively, announced bird flu-related reports in the July 6 issue of their online magazine. The reported that H5N1, a kind of bird flu virus, was detected in an examination of a large group of migrant birds which died in Qinghai Lake in China over a month starting late April.

“Nature” ran a paper written by the microbiology department of Hong Kong University, while “Science” introduced the findings of the microbiology research institute of the Chinese Academy of Science.

The two teams detected H5N1 as a result of biopsies of wild geese, cormorants and gulls which were found dead in the lake. The virus is responsible for the recent massive deaths of poultry, including chickens and ducks, in Southern China and Hong Kong.

Qinghai, which is located in west China, is well known as a summer place for migrant birds. Summer visitors from Southeast Asia, Australia and New Zealand influx to the place around April for breeding and leave around September.

Both teams voiced their warnings, saying, “Bird flu could rapidly spread across the world via migrant birds.”

Park Sung-geun, director of the Ornithological Society of Korea, said, “The migrant birds in the report do not come to Korea,” adding, “But we need a thorough supervision on places in Korea where there is an influx of migrant birds, as summer visitors fly to Korea from Southeast Asia in April every year.”