THE Veterinary Services Department in Manicaland has set up checkpoints in Chipinge and Chimanimani districts in an effort to control the movement of birds following an outbreak of bird flu in neighbouring Mozambique.
The checkpoints were mounted at Manzvire and Mt Selinda in Chipinge as well as Machongwe and Kopa in Chimanimani respectively.
In a letter seen by The Manica Post, written by Manicaland Provincial Veterinary Services Department director, Dr Charles Guri, he said the province should be on high alert in order to prevent any possible entry of the infectious disease.
Dr Guri urged veterinary staff manning the checkpoints to take advantage of the exercise to educate and distribute awareness material on Avian Influenza to the public.
“Mozambique has a current HPAI outbreak at Inhambane. Inhambane is located about 733km south east of Mount Selinda (Chipinge).
“Due to the proximity by distance for both human traffic and migratory birds, Zimbabwe is at risk of this current Bird flu outbreak in Mozambique.
“All veterinary staff in the province are, therefore, exhorted to be on high alert in order to prevent any possible entry of infectious material into the country (poultry and poultry products) and detect any possible signs that may be associated with HPAI.
“Because of this, veterinary check points were established. In addition, the veterinary port health at Forbes Border Post is considered a veterinary check point for this HPAI threat by default,” reads part of the letter.
HPAI diseases is also known as Bird flu.
This type of flu is most contracted by contact with sick birds. It can also be passed from person to person.