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S. Korea culls more than 6.5 million poultry over bird flu

2016/12/09 15:58

SEOUL, Dec. 9 (Yonhap) -- South Korea quarantine officials have slaughtered more than 6.54 million poultry as part of efforts to contain a bird flu that has ravaged chicken farms across the country, an official said Friday.

They also plan to kill an additional 2.43 million chicken and duck across the country, said Yoo Jae-sung, an official of the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, without giving a specific time frame.

That would raise to nearly 9 million the total number of poultry culled since Nov. 16, when the first outbreak was reported at a chicken farm in Haenam, about 420 kilometers south of Seoul.

The outbreak -- the first in nearly seven months -- was caused by the highly pathogenic H5N6 strain of bird flu, a new type of virus that was first detected in South Korea.

The quarantine authorities said migratory birds are a source of the outbreak of bird flu as there have been no reports of infections through the movement of people or livestock.

South Korea culled 14 million birds in 2014.