Mysore/Mysuru: After Kerala was placed on high alert on Monday following outbreak of bird flu in Kottayam and Alappuzha districts, Mysuru Zoo and Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary have been put on high alert.
Mysuru Zoo Executive Director Ajit M. Kulkarni, speaking to Star of Mysore this morning said that the Zoo Authority of Karnataka (ZAK) and the Union Government had written a letter to the Zoo about three days back asking them to be alert.
Pointing out that migratory birds do not arrive at the Zoo, he said that precautionary steps such as spraying of disinfectants and giving immunity boosters through food to birds are being undertaken at the Zoo. The Zoo staff are constantly monitoring the behaviour and health of the birds and are looking out for any symptoms of bird flu in them.
Meanwhile, Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary Range Forest Officer (RFO) K. Surendra said that In-charge DCF (Wildlife) Dr. K.C. Prashanth Kumar yesterday visited the sanctuary and instructed the staff to inspect all 23 islands at the bird sanctuary.
The RFO further said that the DCF has instructed the staff to inform villagers, who have agricultural land in the sanctuary surroundings to immediately inform the Forest Department staff, if they come across any dead bird besides asking the forest staff to inform the higher officials about the same and send the bird carcass to the lab for testing.
RFO Surendra said that samples of bird droppings are being collected to be sent for testing and added that till now, there were no changes in the behaviour of birds nor has any bird shown the symptoms of bird flu.
Meanwhile, Mysuru City Corporation (MCC) Health Officer Dr. D.G. Nagaraj said that there are no poultry farms under MCC limits but there are 120 to 150 stalls selling chicken meat in MCC limits.
He further said that the MCC has asked the chicken stall owners to inform MCC authorities if any chicken die under mysterious circumstances besides asking them to keep the stalls clean.
Animal Husbandry Department Deputy Director Dr. Suresh told SOM that all poultry farm owners have been instructed to report any unnatural death of poultry in their farms besides stating that the Department staff have been instructed to keep vigil on lakes in and around Mysuru where migratory birds roost.
He further said that owners of goods vehicles transporting chicken to Kerala and coming back to the State have been instructed to disinfect their vehicle and the cages before entering the State.