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The rise in the case of bird flu poses little threat to humans

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If you’re worried about the recent increase in bird flu cases, you don’t have to worry about it, and you don’t need to take any additional steps, according to an expert at the University of Alberta on bird flu.

Like human flu, there are various strains bird influenza, Catherine Magor, a professor of biological sciences, explains. Currently, it is the highly pathogenic H5N1 strain that infects several poultry populations throughout Canada, including Alberta.Migratory bird bird In some cases, it may be the cause of recent swells.

“I think that’s why it’s coming in the spring now,” says Magor.

The risk to humans is incredibly low, explains Magor.Bird flu Respiratory virus It requires a moist environment to remain alive and viable, and relies on direct contact for communication.

“Spreads by contact with secretions from the eyes, nose, mouth and fresh excrement [of birds].. “

If you have frequent contact with wild birds or birds that may come into contact with them, few people would like to take additional measures and the risk of exposure to potentially infectious secretions is small.

Workers responsible for handling birds in large commercial facilities and farms should wear full protective equipment, including N95 masks, when culling infected birds. They also need to change their footwear after walking around the farm and before entering the facility, but she says it’s likely that such places have already taken these steps. I am.

Backyard chicken coops and other poultry owners should place their poultry indoors or in a restricted environment to prevent accidental contact with wild birds such as wild geese and ducks. This is a recent precautionary measure taken by the Edmonton Valley Zoo against birds.

Hunters also need to pay attention to how they interact with sick and dead birds that they may encounter outdoors, Magor said.

“If the hunter is hunting Wild birds Like hunting birds and snow geese, they need to be very careful. “

If you come across a sick or dead bird that may have infected the flock, you should avoid touching the dead bird and reconsider the hunting of certain species of birds. In addition, hunters should always wear gloves to wipe out birds outdoors.

Even in moist areas near water bodies such as lakes, people don’t have to worry about walking their pets. Pet owners should avoid picking up dead birds when they are outside.

According to Magor, there is no need to worry about infection through cooked poultry or eggs. She explains that commercial farms already have a very high level of biosecurity.Any kind of infected bird will do it Food chainTherefore, there is no risk of buying poultry products of any kind.

The virus is disproportionately infected poultry Populations due to the specific genes they lack. Magor’s research focuses on genes involved in the detection of influenza.

“This gene is uniquely absent in chickens, turkeys, and perhaps other wild birds like pheasants, but it is present in other birds and humans.”


Need to worry about bird flu?


Quote: Increasing cases of bird flu pose little threat to humans (May 19, 2022) https://medicalxpress.com/news/2022-05-uptick-avian-flu-cases-poses.html Obtained from May 19, 2022

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The rise in the case of bird flu poses little threat to humans

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