An outbreak of contagious avian influenza in Matgdor in Wervershof. Resident Martijn Pennekamp discovered a carcass and some injured geese in a hole in front of his house last weekend. The animals were collected by an animal ambulance and killed at Pont Piet in Meadow. At the same time, he fears for the fate of his duck Streicher Juna, Kwekkie and Gerrit.
Last weekend, Matjedor resident Martijn Pennekamp saw a dead goose perched in the ditch. “I didn’t think it would be nice, because our stomachs are swimming there too. So I laid it on its side. Then I saw two other geese turn their heads strangely. I could sail to them and they could barely move.”
A small Google search soon turned up a clue: bird flu. “I was a little shocked by that, because it is a rather fatal disease. In parts of the Netherlands, entire stables were cleaned if bird flu was detected. I was especially afraid of hitting our stomachs.”
Jonah, Kweki and Jerrett
Because over the past two months, the Pennekamp family has expanded the family in the form of Juna, Kwekkie, and Gerrit. “They had just been swimming outside for a week. But with that bird flu I brought them in anyway.”
On Sunday, the animal ambulance came to collect two injured geese, and a day later the municipality removed the dead goose.
They are familiar with the stories at De Bonte Piet Bird Sanctuary in Meadow. “Bird flu usually stops when the weather gets warmer, but it has continued this year,” says Marliss Testtrot. Probably because it’s a virus that adapts.
Garden keepers are weak. “We can’t do anything. In fact, since it is so contagious, animals are not allowed in. After that they can infect healthy animals and then the suffering is unimaginable. They come here in a separate barn. We don’t do anything anymore and we have to carry out euthanasia.”
Birds with bird flu still come to De Bonte Piet two to three times a week. Avian influenza mainly affects poultry, waterfowl and birds. It’s a nervous condition, which often makes animals turn their heads and look drunk.
Benecamp warns fellow villagers to call an animal ambulance when they see these symptoms, and in the event of animal deaths, the municipality should be reported via the Fixi app. “And goose feces contain a lot of disease-causing bacteria, so beware of dogs and cats.”
Juna, Kwekkie, and Gerrit have to have fun in the loft for the next few days. “They’re a little anxious, and they want to go in the water,” Benecamp says. “I hope it will be over soon. It would be a shame to say goodbye to the ducks we’ve been enjoying for eight weeks.”
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