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Peregrine Falcon tested for H5 virus

    Preliminary testing of a Peregrine Falcon found in Tin Shui Wai has indicated a suspected case of H5 avian influenza, a spokesman for the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) said today (March 23), adding that further confirmatory tests are being conducted.

     The bird was collected by AFCD staff in Grandeur Terrace following a public referral on March 21. Appearing injured at the time, it was sent to the department's Animal Management Centre in Sheung Shui and died the following day.

     People are reminded to observe good personal hygiene. They should avoid personal contact with wild birds and live poultry and clean their hands thoroughly after coming into contact with them.

     More than 6,000 dead birds have been tested for H5N1 avian influenza since late October, 2005, with 16 confirmed cases involving two chickens and 14 wild birds.

Ends/Thursday, March 23, 2006
Issued at HKT 18:18