Monday, March 06, 2006

Sick birds and water

An interesting report from Yemen described what sick birds do when ill. Recently doves in Yemen were found to be ill in what was suspected to be H5N1. In fact the doves were suffering from Newcastle disease. The birds were exhausted, hardly moved and could be easily caught. The birds when touched were very warm showing that they had a high temperature. What the feverish birds do is find water sources and will then proceed to drink as much as they can, whilst also soaking their heads and bodies in the water to cool their fever. There is no reason why birds with H5N1 would not act in the same way as these doves with Newcastle disease when suffering a fever. H5N1 if shed into a water source is active for a certain period of time, and if a human or other animal comes into contact with the contaminated water then it does not take much imagination to guess the consequences.

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