Highly pathogenic H5N8 strain of bird flu (Yonhap)
South Korea's agriculture ministry said Thursday it has confirmed another case of highly pathogenic H5N8 strain of bird flu in wild bird droppings, raising concerns over the disease's possible spread to poultry farms.
It marked the fifth outbreak of highly pathogenic H5N8 avian influenza this year. The latest outbreak in Icheon, Gyeonggi Province, came just five days after a fourth case broke out in the same area, according to the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.
The government banned the entry of people and vehicles within a 500-meter radius of the location where the fifth outbreak was reported. A transportation ban was issued on farms within a 10-kilometer range as well.
South Korea has raised its guard against the disease since late October, when it found the highly pathogenic H5N8 strain of bird flu near a creek in Cheonan, 92 kilometers south of Seoul. It was the first avian influenza case in the country in 32 months.
Highly pathogenic AI is very contagious and can cause severe illness and even death in poultry. (Yonhap)