H5N1 avian influenza has been detected at a turkey farm in Israel, marking the first time the virus has been found in the country in nearly three years.

According to a report from the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), the virus was found at a turkey fattening farm that contained 13 pens with a total of 55,000 male turkeys and 25,000 female turkeys, with deaths being observed at five of those pens. An estimated 15,000 deaths occurred as a result of avian influenza, and 10,000 other turkeys were destroyed.

Another poultry farm, located 350 meters away, was home to another 61,000 turkeys. While those birds have been identified as susceptible, no clinical signs of avian influenza have been seen at this farm. No other commercial poultry flocks are within a three-kilometer radius of the affected farm.

As of January 18, control measures taken included quarantine, movement control inside the country, and zoning. Further control measures expected to be taken include stamping out, screening and disinfection of the infected premises.


Three tests for the virus were conducted at the Kimron Veterinary Institute, with one proving positive and the results pending for the other two tests.

OIE stated that it will submit weekly follow-up reports on the situation.