January 6, 2017 / 6:43 PM / a year ago

Turkeys to be culled after bird flu found on German farm

HAMBURG (Reuters) - About 7,000 turkeys are to be culled after a case of H5N8 bird flu was found on another German farm in the major German poultry production region of Lower Saxony, authorities said on Friday.

The contagious H5N8 strain of the disease has been confirmed on the farm and the birds are being culled, the local government in Oldenburg in Lower Saxony said.

The H5N8 strain has been found in over 500 wild birds in Germany in recent weeks. There have also been a series of cases in farms, mostly in north Germany, although the government introduced tough sanitary rules to prevent infection by wild birds including orders to keep poultry indoors in high-risk regions.

Some other European countries and Israel have also discovered cases of H5N8 bird flu in the past few weeks and some ordered poultry flocks be kept indoors to prevent the disease spreading.

France on Wednesday ordered a massive cull likely to involve 800,000 ducks in three regions most affected by a severe outbreak of bird flu as it tries to contain the virus which has been spreading quickly over the past month.

The H5N8 strain has never been found in humans and cannot be transmitted through food.

Reporting by Michael Hogan; Editing by Susan Fenton

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