September 26, 2022

Benguet has temporarily banned the entry of live poultry and poultry products from Nueva Ecija and Pampanga due to the rising case of avian influenza in these provinces.

Gov. Mechor Dic-las, in an advisory to all shippers entering the province dated Sept. 5, said laboratory samples collected by the Provincial Veterinary Office (PVO) from several poultry establishments in the province also tested positive of the H5N1 avian influenza or bird flu.

The laboratory samples were collected from shipped-in chicken from Nueva Ecija and Pampanga, which are the usual sources of poultry products entering the province.

The ban included all live poultry, poultry products, and by-products including but not limited to chicken, duck, and other fowls for food consumption, pet, or game fowls.  

Provincial Veterinarian Miriam Tiongan said other samples taken from live poultry markets were also submitted to the Department of Agriculture central office.

Tiongan said there were reported cases of dead birds from the various live markets in La Trinidad, which the staff member traced from Nueva Ecija.

The PVO is now coordinating with the local businessmen for the disinfection of the affected poultry raisers.

She urged the public to report cases of fowl mortalities or any observations of the symptoms of bird flu.

This year, cases of bird flu in the province were reported in Tublay, Buguias, and La Trinidad. Most of the earlier cases of bird flu were from backyard farms while the recent cases are commercial businesses.

Earlier, the DA-Cordillera reminded local government units to ban the practice of traditional bird catching or ikik.

The practice is usually conducted during the fly-in season of migratory birds starting September.

The LGUs were recommended to adopt resolutions or memorandums to temporarily ban bird hunting for the safety of the public due to the ongoing bird flu cases in the country. – Ofelia C. Empian

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