THE Department of Agriculture (DA) in Davao Region will conduct surveillance monitoring for the commercial and backyard poultry farms in the five areas in the region that are located at or near hot spots for the migratory birds coming from China and other countries in September.

In connection with the Avian Influenza Type A Sub-Type H5 outbreak in San Luis, Pampanga, the DA has implemented precautionary measures especially with the entrance of poultry-related products in Visayas and Mindanao.

A memorandum circular was released by Bureau of Animal Industry states that poultry meat, day-old chicks, eggs, and semen sourced from Avian-free must ensure the SPS Import Clearance, International Veterinary Certificate, together with the shipping permit issued by the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Veterinary Quarantine Offices.

“It’s good that the virus that was detected in Pampanga does not affect human. It’s an H7 and H9 that is deadly to humans. With these viruses, the poultry animals do not show signs and symptoms but they are fatal to humans,” said DA Davao Region Bird Flu coordinator veterinarian Dannie Apelo.

He also said H7 and H9 virus usually starts in China.

“We have five hot spot areas in Region 11 where migratory birds yearly go to. For Davao Oriental, we have Banay-banay and Lupon. In Davao del Sur, Malalag. In, Davao del Norte, Carmen and Dujali. Every September, during fly in period, the migratory birds come in, we collect blood and swab samples,” he said.

As for Davao City, on September 25, DA Davao Region will conduct the first sample collection for commercial and backyard poultry farms in Tugbok, Calinan, and Talomo wherein they target to get a total of 360 samples.

In the event that even a single fowl be found positive of Avian Flu virus, all the poultry animals within a kilometer’s radius of the poultry farm where the fowl was found will be exterminated.

Those poultry animals within the seven kilometer radius from the poultry farm will be considered in the holding and control zone wherein thorough monitoring and vaccination will be done.

Even the farm workers and representatives of the local government units that had been inside the farm will undergo three to five days veterinary quarantine.

Despite the possible threat, Apelo is positive that the prohibition of sending chicken from Luzon to Mindanao would not affect the chicken industry of the region as it does not source out chickens from Luzon even before the outbreak.