Greek bird flu case confirmed
European Union officials say bird flu had been found on one of the Greek isles and tests were being conducted to determine if it is the deadly H5N1 virus.
The European Commission said Monday Greek veterinary authorities had informed it of a suspected case of avian influenza on the island of Inousses, based on a serological test that proved positive for the presence of avian influenza H5 antibodies.
The samples were in the process of being sent for confirmation and virus isolation tests at the Greek national reference laboratory in Thessaloniki, and the European Commission said it had requested that samples also be sent immediately to the Community Reference Laboratory in Weybridge, England.
The commission said it is preparing to ban the movement of live poultry and poultry products from the infected area in the Chios region.
The EU said its ban would be adopted as soon as the Greek national reference laboratory confirmed the results, expected Tuesday.
The EU said following consultations between the commission and the Greek Ministry of Agriculture, Greek authorities had agreed to restrict the dispatch of live poultry and poultry products as a precautionary measure.
Monday afternoon the mayor of the island of Chios said a farmer on nearby Inousses who raises turkeys and chickens noted on Thursday that some of his birds had died.
Two state veterinarians were sent in to look at nine turkeys. They also took blood samples from some chickens.