Monday, April 13, 2009

Resistance to Culling Aiding Spread of H5N1 in Indonesia

Over the weekend, Indonesian officials announced that H5N1 has spread to poultry in at least three villages in Sungai Apit district in Siak regency, Riau. The outbreak was first detected following the death of a young child at the end of March, but die-offs of poultry in the boy's village were occurring for at least a week before he became ill. Lab tests have confirmed H5N1 is present in these villages, and may have spread throughout the subdistrict.

Reluctance among poultry farmers and residents to report suspected H5N1 and continued resistance by farmers to cull their sick poultry are aiding the spread of the infection, health officials said. The main factor behind such resistance is lack of compensation for farmers and residents that cull their poultry.

"It's not that we don't want to, but the district office has no such budget for the purpose (culling compensation). For now, we can only remind the residents, including through sermons at mosques, of the risks of bird flu. We cannot force the residents to cull their poultry if they don't want to," he (District chief Indra Atmaja) said.

For more on this story see the Jakarta Post:

No comments: