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Dead Wild Geese in Ialomita County Romania

Recombinomics Commentary

October 8, 2005

He said that quarantines have been declared in Ceamurlia de Jos, Maliuc, Malcoci, Agighiol, Babina, Chilia, Smârdan and Jurilovca, where bird flu cases might appear.

"In the Ceamurlia de Jos case, we have currently identified the bird flu antibodies, and we will isolate the virus and will send the sample to a laboratory in Great Britain to confirm the bird flu'''', Agafitei said.

According to ANSVSA representatives, the number of dead birds, including those killed by the sanitary veterinary authorities, reached 468 (hens, ducks, geese, turkey hens and swans).

They had also collected samples from two dead wild geese in Ialomita County.

The main symptoms of the birds suspected are heavy breathing, diarrhea, changes in the head and neck areas, etc.

The finding of dead wild geese in the adjacent county of Ialomita provides additional evidence that the deaths of the domestic birds are due to H5N1 wild bird flu.  Ialomita County is southwest of Tulcea Country and is just northeast of Bucharest.

Wild geese are usually not killed by H5N1, but the H5N1 found in bar headed geese at Qinhai Lake in China had the unusual property of killing wild birds.  The dead wild geese in Romania may signal similar infections.  The appearance of H5N1 in Romania would provide additional evidence that H5N1 does not burn itself out in wild bird populations, but is readily transmitted and transported.

H5N1 in the wild birds would also suggest that H5N1 is widely distributed in Europe, although only government officials in Romania and Turkey have described bird die offs that were likely due to H5N1 wild bird flu from Siberia.

The announcements by these two countries, and verification of H5N1 by Great Briton will likely lead to a number of additional reports of H5N1 in Europe and the Middle East.  The expansion of H5N1 in these areas is expected to be rapid, and each reported country will mark a first reported incident of H5N1.

The dramatic expansion of geographical reach will significantly increase the likelihood of a significant H5N1 pandemic.


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