DA confirms H5N6 bird flu at poultry farm in Rizal

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The Department of Agriculture (DA) has confirmed the detection of H5N6 highly pathogenic avian influenza outbreak in backyard poultry farms in Taytay, Rizal.

In an interview, DA Technical Spokesperson for Avian Influenza Arlene V. Vytiaco said that on September 4, laboratory testing has confirmed the detection of the said bird flu strain in two backyard farms located in Barangay Sta. Ana.

The detection of the virus has resulted in the depopulation of 171 birds consisting of 93 Muscovy ducks, 70 native chickens, and eight pigeons.

Ms. Vytiaco said five backyard poultry raisers experienced unusual mortalities in their flock, but only one raiser reported the incident to the authorities on August 26.

Meanwhile, Ms. Vytiaco said the outbreak has already been contained and the DA has conducted depopulation and surveillance around the one kilometer radius from the backyard farms where the virus was detected.

“All results are negative. There is ongoing cleaning and disinfection in the area,” Ms. Vytiaco said.

Ms. Vytiaco said they are still investigating the cause of the bird flu outbreak in Taytay, noting that the backyard poultry farms are located along the riverbanks of Pasig River.

“Disease investigation is still ongoing to determine the cause of the outbreak,” Ms. Vytiaco.

The confirmation of the bird flu outbreak in Taytay on September 4 breaks the 90 consecutive days of no incidents before declaring the Philippines free from the said animal disease.

The most recent detection of the H5N6 strain was in July, on an egg farm in San Luis, Pampanga that resulted in the culling of 38,701 heads of layer chickens.

According to Ms. Vytiaco, the government will provide indemnification for the affected backyard poultry raisers at P80 per head for chicken and ranging from P80 to P120 per head for duck.