Since birds flu/ avian flu (H5N1) is a very hot new and it have direct impact on pet birds community, I think I should have one topic for it.

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Postby jeffreymelvinread » Mon Apr 23, 2012 8:49 am

Although the perfect mutation of the bird flu virus did happen once, resulting in an epidemic, which was lucky to be contained in a fairly short amount of time, thereby limiting human deaths. Since then outbreaks worldwide have been considered nothing but hit and miss and scientists are closely watching like a yearly event, when the next perfect mutation will occur again.

While the bird flu virus and the common flu virus are almost genetically similar, it is all to easy for the virus to jump host under right conditions and when that happens especially with a new strain of virus, anyone infected will have a less than 50% survival rate. Vaccines created so far are only effective against known strains that have been tested against. The time involve to create any new vaccines against newer strains will be insufficient to fight of any outbreaks with the newer bird flu strain. The only effective option is the break the chain of transmission.

Reports generally indicates the virus jumping hosts from bird to human but what is completely missing is the ability of the human flu virus infecting birds and with mutation, newer bird flu strain are developed. When the deadly bird flu virus has been able to copy the genetic of the virulent common flu, it will be the repeat of the Spanish flu that killed 50 million
(estimated) people worldwide.

The best protection at the moment is to keep the two species apart as far as possible. Having birds and humans living in close quarters of each other is akin to opening the doors to Hades. In the wild, the environment has a way of culling weak birds and in a way, only the healthiest and the strongest birds gets to propagate. The problem is when humans start caring for genetically weak birds and unknowing putting those birds into the breeding pool, thereby creating further weaker birds, which is probably the main reason why the world is seeing a larger number of bird flu related outbreaks that never has been seen before.

This is exactly what happened to a healthy young Indonesian man in his prime, who kept and bred pigeons inside his house. What started out as a hobby for him, lead him to his death in early 2012. Luckily for the world, that bird flu virus strain was not virulent.

The funniest reports are always people who claims that it is the wild birds that are actually causing bird flu, those trans-migratory birds. It has to be them, surely that is what people would want everyone to believe! On a serious note, can a bird that is weak infected with bird flu even make a migratory flight? Those who keep birds as pets would know this for sure.

As it is, the human race are on borrowed time like a ticking time-bomb, until humans begin to properly and honestly analyze their relationship with birds especially pet birds. Majority in the commercial trade are adopting good avicultural practices just to safe-guard their multi-million business worldwide. The question now is from whose back-yard will the next perfect mutation of bird flu come from.

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