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Whooper Swan Deaths Raise H5N1 Wild Bird Flu Concerns
October 10, 2005
Maliuc authorites reported on Oct. 5 three dead swans, on October 7 32 more, and yesterday (Sunday) another 15.
The above comments suggest the number of whooper swans dead in Romania was high. Other reports indicate two dozen whooper swans were also found several weeks ago in Maliuc. These multiple reports of dead whooper swans is of interest, because most of the H5N1 positive dead birds at Erhel Lake in Mongolia were also whooper swans (Cygnus cygnus).
As the number of dead birds accumulate in Europe, it is being increasingly obvious that the H5N1 wild bird flu infections and deaths extends well beyond Romania and Turkey.
If whooper swans were dying in Romania several weeks ago, then they were probably dying in other European countries.
Although these countries had indicated surveillance was being increased, the lack of reporting suggests such surveillance is far from ideal, or deaths are not being reported.
It seems likely that H5N1 wild bird flu is killing whooper swans in Romania, just as it did in Mongolia.
More surveillance and transparency in Europe would be useful