HANOI, March 6 (Xinhua) -- More than 137,000 poultry across 13 provinces and cities of Vietnam have been culled so far this year in an attempt to prevent bird flu outbreaks, the country's Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development said.
In the past two months the country has reported a total of 43 bird flu outbreaks, among which 38 were A/H5N6 and five were A/H5N1, the ministry reported on Thursday. All outbreaks occur in farms with unvaccinated poultry flocks, especially in those that shifted from pigs to poultry.
Local authorities had entire infected flocks culled, disinfected the areas and set up temporary quarantine stations to prevent the widespread of the outbreak.
Besides, Vietnam has culled 19,472 pigs since early 2020 as part of the efforts to contain the African swine fever outbreak. As of Thursday, as many as 28 provinces and cities in the country have not passed the required period of 30 days to declare an end to the African swine fever outbreak.
Challenges facing the epidemic control include poor prevention and control measures at the grassroots level, low vaccination coverage for poultry, with some provinces only reaching 10 to 20 percent, according to the ministry.
The complicated weather developments along with small-scale farms also pose a high risk of the outbreak, while the unavailability of vaccines for swine fever makes the disease outbreak likely to occur.
The ministry will continue to support and create favorable conditions for large livestock enterprises and farms that can ensure biosafety to restock the farm, develop the production and breeding of other livestock and aquaculture.