Saturday 20th February 2021
First cases known from Russia
Avian influenza AH5N8 spreads to humans
In Russia, a certain avian flu pathogen has spread to humans for the first time. Seven workers in a fattening farm in southern Russia were infected with the AH5N8 virus in December, said the head of the consumer protection agency, Anna Popova, to the television broadcaster Rossija 24. So far, there has been no evidence of the virus being transmitted between people.
Avian flu, also known as avian influenza, occurs both in wild birds and repeatedly in poultry farms. In Germany, too, it has been repeatedly detected in the past, for example in several wild birds in northern Germany at the end of last year. As a rule, the virus is fatal for the birds, and a threat to humans has not yet been assumed.
The last major outbreak of avian influenza in Germany and other European countries occurred in the winter of 2016/17. In the Federal Republic of Germany, hundreds of thousands of animals were culled in poultry farms in order to curb the action. The last bird flu outbreak occurred in Bulgaria. In early February, more than 160,000 ducks were therefore culled on two duck farms.