SEOUL – South Korea has detected two highly pathogenic strains of bird flu believed to come from migratory birds, officials said on Wednesday.
The two viruses analyzed were detected in duck farms in South Jeolla Province (southwest), South Korea’s Animal and Plant Quarantine Agency said.
The first virus, detected on Nov. 19, was the H5N6 bird flu; the second, which was discovered on Dec. 2, is also of the H5N6 strain, although its genetic sequence is slightly different.
Highly pathogenic strains of bird flu can make birds severely ill and have a high mortality rate, according to the World Health Organization.
In recent weeks, South Korea has toughened its quarantine measures at duck farms in South Jeolla province to tackle the rising number of bird flu cases.
Earlier this month, the APQA ordered some 76,000 ducks to be culled on five farms located within three kilometers (1.86 miles) of where another case of the flu was detected.
Last year, South Korea culled more than 30 million birds to contain its worst ever bird flu outbreak.