Archive | December 16, 2020

Update 16th Dec 2020 @ 22:25 hrs UTC: Coronavirus Confirmed Cases and Deaths by Country, Territory, or Conveyance. Subject To Change







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Bird Flu

Bird flu has been confirmed on the Isle of Wight, the local authority has confirmed this afternoon (Wednesday).

A wild swan found deceased at Ryde Canoe Lake has tested positive for H5N8 avian flu, meaning the influenza has now reached the Island.

Avian influenza can be deadly to birds but has little direct impact on humans. Public Health England advises that the risk to public health is very low, and the Food Standards Agency has said that on the basis of the current scientific evidence, avian influenzas pose a very low food safety risk for UK consumers.

As previously reported by Island Echo, 7 swans have been found dead at the canoe lake over the past 2 weeks – 4 in the past 2 days alone. Each reported death has been investigated by the council but in only 1 case was the dead bird still present. That bird was securely stored and reported to DEFRA.

As a precaution, footpaths around Ryde Canoe Lake will now be closed off. Police have implemented a cordon in the area this lunchtime.

Visitors to Ryde Canoe Lake or nearby water bodies are being asked to not attempt to feed the waterfowl at this time, as this may attract them to locations where they could spread infection, especially in areas where domesticated birds might also be about.

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South Korea culls 5.6 million birds to prevent highly pathogenic bird flu, avian influenza

Bird Flu

South Korea said Wednesday it is speeding up efforts to cull poultry around farms infected with highly pathogenic bird flu amid growing concerns over the virus spreading nationwide.

The country has culled 5.59 million birds as preventive measures since reporting the first farm-related case in late November, according to the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.

Chickens accounted for 3.5 million, followed by quails with 1.2 million and ducks with 880,000.

Local authorities slaughtered poultry within a 3-kilometer radius of infected farms.

South Korea has reported 16 cases of highly pathogenic bird flu from farms. South Jeolla Province accounted for six, and Gyeonggi and North Jeolla provinces accounted for three infections each.

There were also cases from the provinces of South and North Chungcheong, along with South Gyeongsang.

Highly pathogenic avian influenza is contagious and can cause severe illness and even death in poultry.

The country reported this year’s first highly pathogenic avian influenza case from wild birds in late October. Since then, a total of 29 cases have been found from wild bird habitats nationwide.

Authorities are currently investigating seven suspected cases from wild birds.

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Suspected Cases Of Bird Flu Strikes Parts Of The UK In Warwickshire, Evesham, Stratford, River Avon, Herefordshire, Worcester, Shropshire

Bird Flu

PEOPLE are being advised not to touch sick or dead birds after suspected cases of bird flu in Warwickshire.

Cases of avian influenza were recently confirmed in swans in Evesham, and in Stratford it was reported the bodies of two swans retrieved from River Avon for analysis, had died of the condition.

Cases have also been reported across the country and closer to home have been confirmed in Herefordshire and are understood to be in Worcester and Shropshire.

Public Health England and local council bosses are urging residents and members of wildlife organisations not to touch sick or dead wild birds.

With infection numbers on the rise, Defra has declared the country as an Avian Influenza Prevention Zone to prevent the disease spreading to poultry and captive birds. This means it is a legal requirement for all bird keepers to follow strict biosecurity measures and for all poultry and captive birds to be housed.

The strain can spread to other birds, but there have been no human cases of infection reported.

While the risk to human health is considered very low, health bosses say it is vital people do not touch sick live birds or bird carcasses.

Public health England regional disease control spokesman Dr James Chipwete said: “During the last week there have been confirmed cases of avian influenza in swans in Evesham, and we are receiving an increasing number of reports of sick and dead swans in Worcester. We are awaiting results of investigations currently being undertaken.

“We know that people are concerned for the welfare of the swans, especially ensuring they are fed in these colder months, however it is important that people avoid contact with these sick or dead birds. Even though no cases of human infection have been associated with this strain of avian flu, as a precaution, anyone who was not wearing appropriate PPE while in contact with the droppings or birds in an area where the infection has been confirmed, will require close monitoring and a course of antiviral medication for 10 days from last contact with infected birds.

“We have seen a number of avian flu cases in poultry and captive birds across the country – with confirmed cases in Herefordshire last month, and suspected cases now in Warwickshire.

“People must avoid touching potentially infected birds at all costs, and if you do see any sick or dead birds by waterways or on your private land, please leave them and call the Defra helpline. In areas where the infection has been confirmed, anyone who has been in contact with sick or dead birds or their droppings, while not wearing the correct PPE, should make sure any footwear is properly cleaned and thoroughly wash their hands in soap and water. They should then notify Public Health England’s Health Protection Team to arrange for antiviral medication and active surveillance of their condition. If someone handled infected birds while wearing adequate PPE, they must still undergo surveillance.”

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32,000 Birds Killed Due To Bird Flu – Record Breaking Outbreak Across Many Farms In Japan

Bird Flu

Japan’s worst bird flu outbreak on record spread to new farms this week and has been found in around a quarter of the country’s 47 prefectures, with officials ordering more cullings.

About 32,000 birds will be slaughtered and buried in Sukumo city in Kochi prefecture in southwestern Japan after avian influenza was discovered at an egg farm, the agriculture ministry said on Wednesday.

More infected birds were found on two farms in Kagawa prefecture, where the poultry epidemic emerged last month, with nearly 30,000 birds being slaughtered there, the ministry said.

The outbreak has hit 12 prefectures across Japan and a record 3 million birds have been culled to date.

While the ministry said it is not possible for people to catch avian influenza from eating the eggs or meat of infected chickens, health officials around the world are concerned about the virus strain making a “species jump” to humans and causing a pandemic like the novel coronavirus.

The outbreak in Japan and neighbouring South Korea is one of two separate highly pathogenic avian influenza epidemics hitting poultry around the world, according the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization and Japanese officials.

Both the strain circulating in Asia and one spreading rapidly in Europe originated in wild birds, they said.

Japan has an egg-laying flock of about 185 million hens and a broiler population of 138 million, according to the ministry of agriculture.

Farms in Japan were earlier ordered to disinfect facilities and check hygiene regimes, as well as to ensure that nets to keep out wild birds are installed properly.

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Subject to change

Depth: 80 km

Distances: 22 km SE of Arequipa, Peru / pop: 841,000 / local time: 12:48:43.9 2020-12-16

19 km SE of Ciudad Satelite, Peru / pop: 76,400 / local time: 12:48:43.9 2020-12-16


Subject to change

Depth: 40 km

Distances: 501 km SE of Jayapura, Indonesia / pop: 134,000 / local time: 01:08:29.8 2020-12-17

53 km WSW of Mendi, Papua New Guinea / pop: 26,200 / local time: 02:08:29.8 2020-12-17


Subject to change

Depth: 6 km

Distances: 46 km SW of Reykjavík, Iceland / pop: 118,000 / local time: 04:33:27.0 2020-12-16

9 km W of Grindavík, Iceland / pop: 2,800 / local time: 04:33:27.0 2020-12-16


Subject to change

Depth: 26 km

Distances: 5.207°N 125.439°E

DYFI Intensity Map