Aug 6, 2004 (CIDRAP News) – South Africa has stopped all poultry exports and plans to slaughter 6,000 ostriches on two farms because of an avian influenza outbreak, but the flu is a different strain from the one that has plagued Southeast Asia this year, according to news services.Reports by Reuters and other services today listed the strain as H5N2. The virus that swept through Southeast Asia early this year and has recurred in several countries this summer is H5N1.The South African outbreak began about 3 weeks ago and has killed 2,000 ostriches on two farms in the Eastern Cape province, according to an SABC (South African Broadcasting Corp.) News report today. Authorities planned to kill the remaining 6,000 ostriches on the two farms, and farms in the surrounding area were under quarantine, the report said.The SABC story described the H5N2 virus found in the ostriches as “extremely infectious but not transferable to human beings and poultry.” The H5N1 strain in Asia earlier this year caused at least 34 human cases and killed 24 people.Reuters quoted the South Africa Department of Agriculture today as saying it has “stopped exports of poultry and poultry products from South Africa until the outbreak has been dealt with successfully.”A note posted yesterday on ProMED-mail, the online reporting system of the International Society for Infectious Diseases, said avian flu outbreaks in ostriches don’t necessarily affect poultry. The note, by a ProMed-mail moderator, said various low-pathogenic strains of avian flu infected ostriches in South Africa in 1991, 1992, 1994 and 1995. The first report of highly pathogenic avian flu in ostriches came from Italy in 2000, the note said.In other recent developments, a new avian flu outbreak was reported in Vietnam this week, according to Xinhua, China’s state news service. The Aug 3 report said the disease cropped up on a farm in the southern city of Can Tho. Including that outbreak, southern Vietnam has had outbreaks in 11 areas since late June, leading to the death of 63,000 chickens by disease or culling, the story said.See also:Aug 3 news release from South Africa National Department of Agriculturehttp://www.nda.agric.za/Aug 5 ProMED-mail postings on avian flu in South Africa, including note by ProMED moderator
Indianapolis, In. — With the arrival of camping season, visitors to DNR properties can help prevent the spread of invasive species by brushing up on the DNR firewood rule.The rule helps protect Indiana’s trees from the 140 known pests and pathogens that currently affect forests, as well as pests we don’t know about yet. Several pests and pathogens are transported through firewood movement.Under the rule, visitors to state parks, reservoirs, state forests, and state fish & wildlife areas can bring firewood from home—as long as the bark has been removed. Removing the bark minimizes the risk of accidental infestation through firewood movement, because insect larvae live in sapwood under the bark.Guests may also bring firewood into DNR properties, if it’s:— Kiln-dried scrap lumber.— Purchased outside the property and bears either a USDA compliance stamp or a state compliance stamp.— Purchased from the property campstore or on-site firewood vendor and has a state compliance stamp.Regardless of where visitors get their firewood, they should burn it all at the campsite before they leave.In short, the firewood rule means: Buy it with a stamp, bring it debarked, burn it all.“There are several invasive species causing significant damage to Indiana’s natural resources at this time” said State Entomologist Megan Abraham, who is the director of the DNR Division of Entomology & Plant Pathology. “Emerald Ash Borer, Callery pear, Gypsy moth, Kudzu, Hydrilla, and Purple Loosestrife to name a few.”“It’s the species that we have not spotted in Indiana that we need help from the public to keep an eye out for,” she added.The DNR asks members of the public to keep an eye on their local forests and natural resources for signs and symptoms of trees or vegetation dying off for seemingly no reason.“The DNR would rather come out and inspect an area and find nothing to worry about than find out after the fact that someone had spotted a problem and failed to report it,” Abraham said.If you see signs of trees in decline with no explanation, call the DNR at (866) NO EXOTIC (866-663-9684) with the date and location. Members of the public may report invasive species to the DNR through the Report IN website at eddmaps.org/indiana/, or by downloading the Great Lakes Early Detection Network (GLEDN) app on a smartphone.For more about the rule see firewood.dnr.IN.gov.For more information on all invasive species that could affect Indiana and ways to help stop their spread, see dnr.IN.gov//3123.htm.To view all DNR news releases, please see dnr.IN.gov.