Brabant Nord-Ost’s animal ambulance has been inundated with reports of bird flu. According to Rens van Lieshout of Dierenambulance, there are hundreds of reports per day. The establishment must operate dozens of times a day for a bird with potential bird flu.
According to Van Lichut, the situation is not good. It mainly receives a lot of reports from the area around Maas and from bigger places like Den Bosch. In the case of the Maas, it is mainly concerned with waterfowl, for example the reports from the city of pigeons and songbirds. “It’s worse than usual,” van Lichot says. Crowds are often seasonal. Van Lichot knows that in the spring it is often about young birds and ducks. In the fall, it is often related to large groups of birds that are engaged in bird migration.
Animal Ambulance can handle a large portion of calls by giving advice. If the animals are already dead, the ambulance will not come. The municipality’s job is to clean up dead birds.
According to van Lieshout, it is entirely possible to tell if birds have bird flu or not. “They exhibit strange symptoms. They are unsettled, turn their heads, disoriented and you can usually get close to them. This is not normal behavior for birds, as they are shy of people.”
Should an ambulance arrive, staff adhere to avian influenza protocol. For example, there is a “disaster ambulance”, specially designed to transport animals infected with bird flu. Then the animals go to the nearest vet, who puts them to sleep. Brabant-Nordost Animal Ambulance is active in nineteen municipalities of Brabant and part of South Gelderland.
Remarkably, the animal ambulance in West Brabant hardly receives any reports of bird flu. This pertains to one report “not even every week,” says the spokesperson. West Brabant takes care of the six municipalities in the far west of Brabant. According to Van Lieshout, this can be explained by the fact that bird flu is more common in some areas than in others. “There has been an outbreak here recently and there is also a ban on transportation.”
problems for a long time
Avian influenza has been rampant in our country for a year now. Unique, the virus usually disappears in the summer, only to reappear later in the year. However, there appears to be no end to the wave of bird flu and the national confinement obligation, which has been in effect since the beginning of this month. Last Thursday, 25,000 laying hens were culled in Nirkanth.
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