May 23, 2007 (CIDRAP News) – H5N1 avian influenza has continued to flare up in poultry on two continents this week, with Vietnam, Ghana, and Pakistan all confirming new outbreaks in the past 2 days.In Vietnam over the weekend, more than 2,000 ducks died, and another 6,000 were culled in various areas affected by outbreaks of H5N1, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported yesterday. The ducks had not been vaccinated.Five provinces have been affected since the beginning of this month, China’s Xinhua news agency reported. They are Quang Ninh, Son La, and Nam Dinh in the north, Nghe An in the central region, and Dong Thap in the south.UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) representative Andrew Speedy told AFP that rather than trying to wipe out the virus, which is believed to be widespread in Vietnam’s bird population, efforts will focus on vaccination campaigns, which have proved highly effective.”We are now convinced that it’s pretty much endemic and that the vaccinations will be required for the foreseeable future, although there will be an attempt to find an exit strategy at some point,” Speedy said.The Ministry of Agriculture’s Department of Animal Health said 119 million birds in 60 cities and provinces nationwide have been vaccinated this year, Xinhua reported.This year’s second round of nationwide vaccinations is now starting, AFP reported.Ghana reported its second outbreak of the virus on a farm in Sunyani, about 250 miles north of the capital, Accra, according to a Reuters report published yesterday. Gary Quarcoo, the agriculture ministry’s head of veterinary services, said veterinary officials have culled thousands of birds in the area and destroyed animal feed and farm equipment.Ghana’s first outbreak H5N1 was detected on a farm near the port city of Tema in April.In Pakistan, officials said today that more than 5,000 chickens were culled after an outbreak that killed about 6,000 chickens was confirmed on three farms near Islamabad, according to another AFP report. The country’s last outbreaks occurred in April in the northwest and in the southern city of Karachi, the story said.
The daughter of Galileo tops ante-post lists for both the Guineas and the Oaks after a brilliant display in Longchamp’s Prix Marcel Boussac. However, in a stable tour on the At The Races website, her trainer said: “She had a bit of a temperature a few weeks ago, so we eased off her a little bit. She’s in good form now and will go to the Curragh for a little canter on Sunday.” O’Brien continued: ” She’s in all the Classics and I think she’ll be quick enough for a mile, though Joseph (O’Brien) and Ryan (Moore) both think she’ll get a mile and a half. “The one thing is that she’s a big filly and while I don’t think she wants soft ground, she does have a round enough action and you wouldn’t necessarily want to belt her off really fast ground at Newmarket this early in the season as she’s a filly you’d look forward to through the whole year.” Qualify is another potential Guineas challenger and was last seen finishing a luckless eighth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf. “She’s a nice filly and we just weren’t riding her right until we dropped her in behind in the Weld Park Stakes,” said O’Brien. “She loves fast ground and you’d imagine she’d get a mile and could even get a mile and a half in time. “She’s a big strong galloping filly and those Fastnet Rocks get better with age. We always thought she could be a Group One filly and hopefully she’ll get there. “She’ll go to the Curragh on Sunday for a spin and we’ll look at possibly starting her off in a Guineas trial with a view to running in the Newmarket 1000 Guineas.” One of the yard’s more interesting older horses is Tapestry, who beat the top-class filly Taghrooda in last year’s Yorkshire Oaks. O’Brien said: “She’s in good form and could possibly start back in something like the Tattersalls Gold Cup or the Coronation Cup. A mile and a half is probably her trip, but she could well get away with a mile and a quarter. “I think she’s done well from three to four, she’s put on plenty of weight and looks stronger and bigger.” Aidan O’Brien has warned that a Qipco 1000 Guineas tilt for Found could be in doubt if fast conditions prevail at Newmarket. Press Association