“The professional breeders of Martinique know the protocol very well and are ready in the event of discovery of avian flu on the island”, indicates Vincent Pfister, deputy director of the DAAF Martinique (Direction of Food, Agriculture and the forest). This is also, according to him, what allowed rapid analyzes to be carried out on a group of deceased poultry. All traces of bird flu have been ruled out, however, the prefecture of Martinique wanted to make this fact known and thus call for the vigilance of breeders, in particular non-professionals.
“There are about 70 breeders of laying hens or broiler chickens. About 150 more develop their production with laying hens. And there are many people who breed in smaller quantities, ”explains the director of the DAAF.
A big economic risk
The concern of the authorities is also the possible transmission of avian flu to humans. “Avian flu poses a major economic and human health risk,” says Vincent Pfister. While this disease causes a lot of damage, especially in Europe, Martinique and Guadeloupe, according to the deputy director of the DAAF, have always been spared. “Bird flu can be transmitted by migrating birds that pass through our islands and may come into contact with a barnyard. »
The symptoms of the virus in animals are as follows: a drop in food consumption, feverishness and high and rapid mortality. After reporting the breeder to his veterinarian, the latter takes a sample. A blood sample from a dead animal and some material from a swab. The analyzes are carried out in mainland France and the results are given quickly.