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Additional Reports of H5 and N1 in DE

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  • Additional Reports of H5 and N1 in DE

    We now have three additional live birds with H5 and N1 being reported in Delaware, this time in Sussex County, an area affected last year. Additional testing underway to confirm the strain and determine pathogenicity.

  • #2
    Re: Additional Reports of H5 and N1 in DE

    About Sussex County

    Sussex County Delaware, the birthplace of the broiler chicken industry, is Delaware’s largest county that spans 979 square miles. In addition, the Town of Lewes, was founded as a Dutch settlement and fishing town in 1631 making Sussex County the oldest county in the state.


    • #3
      Re: Additional Reports of H5 and N1 in DE

      Are we talking about LPAI? So the concern is that poultry in the area will be exposed, and the LPAI will evolve into HPAI? I seem to remember that this is what could happen, but I just want to make sure that this is correct.


      • #4
        Re: Additional Reports of H5 and N1 in DE

        Originally posted by Blue View Post
        Are we talking about LPAI? So the concern is that poultry in the area will be exposed, and the LPAI will evolve into HPAI? I seem to remember that this is what could happen, but I just want to make sure that this is correct.
        H5 and H7 on farms are reportable because they can evolve into high path H5 or H7 (but not the H5N1 from Asia).


        • #5
          Re: Additional Reports of H5 and N1 in DE

          Local news...

          Disappearing shorebirds get a close look

          Drop in red knots well-known, but many others on decline

          <!--Published:200705190345 Modified:200705190039--> By MOLLY MURRAY, The News Journal Posted Saturday, May 19, 2007
          <!-- <table border="0" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" width="200"><tr><td valign="middle">Read Comments</td></tr></table>--><!--End Article14.pbo--><!-- SUBHEAD --><!-- pbs:article tittel2=1 byline=1 text=1 facts=0 bilde=0 useobjects=1 objectclass=21 --><!-- ARTICLE MAIN PHOTO --><!--Begin Article2.pbo--><!-- ARTICLE SIDEBAR --> <!--MAIN PHOTO-->
          <imgparams value=""></imgparams>The News Journal/MOLLY MURRAY <!--Begin Article4.pbo--> <!--ADDITIONAL PHOTOS -->
          <imgparams value="">
          </imgparams> A research team uses a cannon-fired net to capture hundreds of shorebirds this week at Slaughter Beach. Each bird was examined before being released. Ruddy turnstones (above) were one of the species studied.
          <imgparams value=""></imgparams> A researcher examines several red knots before releasing them. The birds are valuable to scientists because they gather in one place.
          <imgparams value="">
          </imgparams>Zoologist Kevin Kalasz directs teams capturing the birds with a hand-held radio. Researchers are collecting data on weight gain.
          <imgparams value=""></imgparams>
          <!--End Article2.pbo--><!-- EDITORIAL CARTOON --><!-- MAIN ARTICLE --><!--Begin Article1.pbo--><!-- MAIN ARTICLE CONTENT --> <!-- 05/19/2007

          SLAUGHTER BEACH -- In the palm of Nigel Clark's hand rests one of ornithology's great mysteries: the red knot.

          Generations of this little rust-breasted bird have migrated from the southern tip of South America to the shores of Delaware Bay to feed on horseshoe crab eggs.

          With the red knot population in decline, scientists gather here to capture the birds and pass them between each other, banding, weighing, plucking feathers for DNA and swabbing to test for avian influenza -- adding to an already weighty body of scientific information.

          For years, the red knots have drawn such attention from scientists from around the world. But in the meantime, populations of other shorebirds have plummeted and now state officials and a global contingent of researchers are beginning to ask why.

          Take the ruddy turnstone. Clark, who has been coming to Delaware Bay each spring since 1998 -- said they used to be plentiful.

          The peak numbers, said Kevin Kalasz, an assistant zoologist with the Delaware Natural Heritage Program, were around 50,000 birds. Now, state officials estimate the number passing through Delaware Bay at about 18,000.

          "The numbers have declined very dramatically [in Delaware] and on the spot they are stopping over in the fall," Clark said, referring to the Bay of Fundy off the coast of New England, where the number of turnstones have dropped from about 250,000 to around 50,000.

          "We don't quite understand what's going on," said Clark, head of projects for the British Trust for Ornithology.

          But one thing is certain: Populations of many species, such as the dublin, the semipalmated sandpiper and the sanderling, are on the decline.

          An International Shorebird Survey, analyzing data from thousands of bird counts in the U.S., found that 21 species suffered population declines of as much as 25 percent since the 1970s.

          But compiling research is difficult in many cases because the birds do not congregate in one area.

          Red knots, on the other hand, gather in one place, allowing scientists to learn more about the decline in population.

          Scientists believe that overharvesting of horseshoe crabs in the mid-1990s is to blame. They are waiting to see whether a two-year moratorium on commercial harvests of the crabs will help red knots rebound.

          But since the crabs are used as bait and are especially effective as an attractant for conch and eel, commercial fishermen have challenged the moratorium in a still-pending lawsuit. Meanwhile, fisheries management agencies and regulators along the Atlantic Coast have dramatically cut the harvest of horseshoe crabs in the past decade.

          This year, Kalasz said, the major focus is looking at the bird to see how much weight they gain during the brief Delaware Bay stopover.

          Researchers working in New Jersey have been worried that red knots -- which they believe depend on an abundance of horseshoe crab eggs to get enough to eat -- don't gain as much weight as they used to. The birds typically gained 8 grams a day, but in recent years, the number has dropped to 2 grams, New Jersey researchers found.

          And there are other concerns.

          Laughing gulls also feed on horseshoe crabs eggs and may be competing for a limited resource. Larger gulls are predators of some shorebirds, as are peregrine falcons.

          This week, with the birds converging in one area, the research teams work quickly to gather as much data as they can.

          They set a cannon net at Slaughter Beach and waited for the birds to shift feeding areas.

          At low tide, they congregate at Mispillion Harbor to feed on horseshoe crab eggs. As the tide rises they move south to Slaughter Beach.

          As the tide slowly turns, streams of shorebirds begin to fly parallel to the shoreline.

          Some begin to land within the net zone.

          Clark and Kalasz, who lead this research effort, crouch in the dune grass, waiting and watching.

          "Here they come," Kalasz said.

          "Three, two, one" -- then comes the pop of the firing mechanism, the drop of the net and the clatter of hundreds of birds.

          The team of researchers quickly begins removing the birds and placing them in holding cages.

          "That's lovely, folks," Clark said. "Lovely catch."
          Contact Molly Murray at 856-7372 or

          "In the beginning of change, the patriot is a scarce man (or woman, and brave, and hated and scorned. When his cause succeeds, the timid join him, for it then costs nothing to be a patriot."- Mark TwainReason obeys itself; and ignorance submits to whatever is dictated to it. -Thomas Paine