Low pathogenic H5N2 avian influenza has struck a broiler breeder farm in Spanish Lookout, Belize, the first occurrence of the disease in the country, according to a report from the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE).
Of a susceptible 17,400 birds, there were 11,572 cases, but no deaths. Poultry in the flocks, with ages of 22 weeks, 38 weeks and 39 weeks, were not showing any clinical signs of avian influenza. However, under the Belize Poultry Improvement Plan’s avian influenza program, all breeder flocks in the area are routinely sampled for avian influenza. Testing was conducted at the Central Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory in Belize, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Veterinary Service Laboratory.
Control measures that have been applied include control of wildlife reservoirs, quarantine, movement control inside the country and screening. Zoning, modified stamping out procedures are to be conducted, and the infected premises will be disinfected.
Spanish Lookout is one of Belize’s larger poultry production areas, as there are 14 breeder flocks with 63,800 birds and an unknown number of layer flocks and broilers, according to the OIE.OIE stated that the organization will submit weekly follow-up reports until the low pathogenic avian influenza outbreak in Belize is resolved.