- UPDATED: January 4, 2021 | 14:44 IST
Panic has gripped several parts of Madhya Pradesh after hundreds of crows have died in three districts in the past one week.
While post mortem reports of the dead crows, sent from Mandsaur and Khargone to the High-Security Animal Disease Laboratory (HSADL) in Bhopal are awaited, the strain of the H5N8 avian flu has been detected from the samples sent from Indore.
“So far, 145 dead crows have been found dead from the Daly College area in Indore. We suspect the crows died because of the H5N8 avian flu that has been detected from the five samples sent to the High-Security Animal Disease Laboratory in Bhopal,” senior veterinary surgeon Dr Promod Sharma told India Today TV over a phone call.
Mandsaur, bordering Rajasthan, have reported death of more than 200 crows in the past three days. Of these, most of the crows have been found dead in the Mandsaur district court premises.
“Crows have been dying in the district court premises for the last two to three days, following which samples have been sent to the HSADL in Bhopal. The report is awaited, but the district collector has directed the health department, the animal husbandry department and the municipal corporation to follow necessary SOPs and ensure timely disinfection wherever required.”
In Khargone’s Kasrawad area, 20 crows have been found dead in the past two days and the count is likely to go up as the district administration has alerted the field officers of the veterinary department after the Indore samples tested positive for H5N8.
“We have got information about crows dying in the district. Some dead crows have been found as well, and they have been sent to the HSADL in Bhopal. At this stage, the lab has not confirmed bird flu to us, but this is a very serious matter and we are on alert,” Dr Lalit Patidar, Animal Husbandry Department, said.
According to people living in the Jangleshwar Mahadev temple area in Kasravad, crows are dropping dead from trees for the past three days. Social activists and local residents are helping the veterinary department officials in tracing the dead crows.
In Indore, the district health department has conducted a door-to-door survey within a radius of 1 kilometre from the Daly college premises where most of the crows were found dead. According to district officials, no one was found having any symptom, while only 10 people were found to have a cough and cold.
The Indore Zoo has also been alerted and asked to take necessary steps for disinfection.