Flamingo in Kuwait Killed by H5N1

Posted on November 12, 2005

H5N1 has been confirmed in the dead flamingo found in Kuwait. MSNBC.com reports that Kuwait had banned live poultry imports but the flamingo is a migratory bird.

uwait reported the first known case of deadly bird flu in the Persian Gulf region on Friday, saying a culled flamingo was carrying the same strain of the H5N1 virus that has killed more than 60 people in Asia.

Kuwait, like other countries in the region, has banned imports of live poultry and birds from avian flu-stricken areas of Asia, but experts said they had expected migratory birds like the flamingo to bring the virus to the Middle East.

Kuwait announced the discovery of two bird flu cases on Thursday but officials were not able to say until now whether they were dealing with the more dangerous strain of the virus.

The bad news is that H5N1 seems to spreading around the country fairly quickly via migratory birds but the good news is that so far the disease has not acquired the ability to easily transmit from human-to-human. However, people are getting sick and dying from contact with poultry in several countries. Another case was recently reported in Thailand.

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