Canada is stockpiling 10 million doses of vaccines—5 million each—designed to combat H5 and H7 avian influenza viruses as a precaution against the possible outbreak of H5N1 or another highly pathogenic strain.

“If there was an inability to control the disease using traditional stamping out methods, vaccine would be something that might be used to be more effective and dampen the opportunity for the disease to spread,” Jim Clark, national manager of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s AI working group, says in the Daily Herald-Tribune.

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Clark says the vaccine the agency has purchased has been shown to work against the virulent Asian H5N1.

Canada’s wild bird surveillance program for this year is still being developed. The goal is to boost the number of birds sampled to 16,000 in 2007 from 12,000 last year, Clark says.