Nigeria: Bird flu in two more states

A deadly bird flu strain has been identified in two more Nigeria states, health authorities said today, and the government ordered an immediate cull of birds in the area.

No humans have been reported infected in the west African nation, authorities said.

Two northern states, Katsina and Zamfara, are now confirmed to have cases of H5N1, meaning that five of Nigeria’s 36 states have been affected.

Nigeria “has accordingly directed immediate stamping out of all the birds in the affected farms,” the government said.

Samples from seven other states have so far come back negative for H5N1, but tests are ongoing, according to a statement.

Nigeria documented Africa’s first H5N1 case earlier this month.

Bird flu has killed 91 people in Turkey and in Asia since 2003, with most victims infected directly by sick birds, according to the World Health Organisation.

Scientists fear the H5N1 virus could mutate to a form more easily passed between humans and spark a pandemic.

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