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Avian influenza detected in two wild birds in Berlin

Berlin im Morgengrauen

Birds fly at dawn over the Spreebogenpark in front of the TV tower.

Avian influenza has been detected in two wild birds in Berlin.

A hawk found in Treptow-Köpenick and a peregrine falcon in Steglitz-Zehlendorf are affected, the Senate Department for Consumer Protection announced on Friday. The findings have reportedly been confirmed by the Friedrich Loeffler Institute (FLI), the Federal Research Institute for Animal Health.

Already evidence of the virus subtype H5N1 in Berlin

This year, the virus subtype H5N1 has already been detected in a swan and three seagulls in Berlin. At the end of last year, the Berlin Zoo had to close for weeks after an avian influenza detection in a water bird. The highly contagious H5N1 subtype is a particular problem for large farms and fattening farms, where culling - the precautionary killing of animals - is carried out. Nationwide, the FLI last reported about 150 cases in wild birds for the month of June.

Appeal to citizens: Report dead birds

The Berlin authority called on citizens to report findings of dead waterfowl, ravens or birds of prey to the competent veterinary and food inspectorate of the district. Then an investigation could be initiated. "Under no circumstances" should one touch sick or dead animals. Feathers should also not be collected. People who keep poultry should now especially protect their animals from contact with wild birds, it said. Feed, litter and drinking troughs should be inaccessible to wild birds.

Seagulls particularly affected this year

Due to bird migration, avian influenza was rampant in this country for a long time, especially in the cold season. In 2021, there were cases for the first time in the summer, especially in northern Europe. In 2022, there was a real summer wave. Experts assume that the pathogen is now present in European wild bird populations all year round. This year, it is again affecting seabird colonies in particular, especially gulls.

Author: dpa/
Publication date: 6 August 2023
Last updated: 6 August 2023

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