Hundreds of geese slaughtered as bird flu grips France's Dordogne

·1-min read

A bird flu outbreak in France’s Dordogne region has led authorities to consider new zoning rules and the premature slaughter of healthy animals to create stocks for the summer.

Over the past two weeks 37 outbreaks have been identified in the south-western department, Chamber of Agriculture figures show.

France Bleu Périgord said the first case was detected on 2 April in a goose farm in Saint-Geniès, in the Périgord Noir area of Dordogne.

Other cases were then found in the Périgord Vert at an experimental goose farm managed by the Chamber of Agriculture and the NGO Asseldor in the town of Coulaures.

“The flagship farm of the goose industry" had been “tragically” hit by bird flu in the Dordogne said secretary general of the Chamber of Agriculture, Pierre-Henri Chanquoi.

Double whammy

Some 700 geese were slaughtered in Coulaures in what chamber vice president Yannick Frances described as a “double punishment" given the farm, created in 1992, also housed a flock of breeders.

“They allowed us to have goslings for the whole sector, and the Dordogne sector represents almost the entire national production,” Frances said.

There are still "two flocks of breeding geese" in the Dordogne with stocks of eggs and chicks, Frances said, adding the challenge now was to “contain the epidemic to preserve them as much as possible”.

The Chamber of Agriculture has suggested that producers located within 20 kilometres of an outbreak quickly transport their healthy animals for force-feeding and slaughter.

It also recommends setting up localised "sanitary vacuums" around the outbreaks to allow production to resume.

The last time bird flu was detected in the Dordogne was in the winter of 2015-2016.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting