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Finland culls 120,000 fur animals after chook flu outbreak

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Finland, Europe’s largest producer of fox fur, is culling 1,20,000 farmed foxes and minks in response to chook flu outbreaks within the nation’s fur farms, officers mentioned Wednesday.

“A culling order has been issued for 13 farms,” Tuija Gadd, head of the virology unit on the Finnish Food Authority, advised AFP. “Culling has already been completed on 10 farms.”

H5N1 chook flu outbreaks in seagulls have been reported in June and the primary circumstances of contaminated fur cattle have been detected in Finland in July.

Finnish authorities determined in early August to cull fur animals on all farms with infections, and the variety of culls has steadily risen since.

Since late 2021, Europe has been gripped by its worst-ever outbreak of chook flu, whereas North and South America have additionally skilled extreme outbreaks.

The World Health Organization warned in July that the surge in chook flu outbreaks amongst mammals might assist the virus to unfold extra simply amongst people.

There are round 400 fur farms in Finland with an estimated 1.3 million fur animals, Gadd mentioned.

The chook flu outbreaks have reinvigorated calls to ban the business within the Nordic nation, Europe’s main producer of licensed fox fur with almost 1,000,000 pelts produced yearly.

During the Covid-19 pandemic, France, the Netherlands and Estonia launched new bans, whereas Denmark ordered a cull of its whole farmed mink inhabitants after Covid outbreaks.

Gadd believed that the outbreaks on fur farms appear to be “calming down,” as seagulls are already beginning their migration south.

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