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Handling bird flu on swiftlets

Leaders of the Veterinary department acknowledged the awkwardness of the prevention of H5N1on swiftlets during the meeting in Ninh Thuan on 17th of May.

In the meeting, Mr. Tran Xuan Hoa, the vice-chairman of Ninh Thuan people committee and Head of animal disease prevention department, reported that the swiftlet ranching has been developed for more than 10 years in Ninh Thuan but there have not been any guidelines or indications for ranchers in dealing with such circumstances. When the outbreak occurred, therefore, the authorities were awkward and had no specific action plan.

According to Mr. Hoa, there was suggestion to annihilate the entire swiflets (100,000 swiftlets) in Thanh Binh Theater by sealing all the entrances and spraying chemicals. However, we could not find any sign of the infection in other swiftlet house around the Thanh Binh theater (about 20 meter away from the theater). Therefore, Ninh Thuan people committee consulted with Veterinary department to apply the screening method to retain the strong and un-infected swiftlets. The Veterinary confirmed that the screening method was accurate and there was only 10% of the swiftlet was terminated. Benkcoid and Virkon-S chemicals were utilized and a high density of swiftlets has returned in Thanh Binh Theater.

Mr. Nguyen Xuan Binh, Director of No. 6 Veterinary office, said that it is very difficult to support the ranchers as swiftlet value is not acknowledged. While waiting for guidance from the Ministry of Agriculture, Ninh Thuan province has directed the Agriculture department to prepare the temporary support plan for swiftlet ranchers.

Audiences requested the Ministry of Agriculture urgently issue the guideline to organize, manage, and farm the swiftlet to secure the safeness in preventing flu for swiftlet. Simultaneously, there should be a deep study in the infection of bird flu on swiftlet to ensure the sustainable development of the swiftlet farming in the future.

Source: Thanh Nien Online