Suspected bird flu victim
in Semarang

The Central Java Health Agency says it has received a report of a suspected case of bird flu in the province.

The 54-year-old man, a resident of the Sambiroto subdistrict, was currently under treatment at St. Elisabeth Hospital in Semarang, officials said.

“The man has been suffering from a cough, a cold and a high fever, with temperature above 38 degrees Celsius,” Rorry Hartono, the agency's disease control and environmental health division chief, said on Wednesday.

More than 62,000 ducks have thought to have died from the H5N1 virus in 21 regencies and cities in the province as of Tuesday, according to officials.

Central Java Animal Husbandry Agency head Whitono said that the virus, which apparently mutated since it was brought to Indonesia via migrating birds, has spread quickly since the first case was reported in the province in September.

“This case is quite new because bird flu commonly infects chickens,” he said.

The Central Java Agriculture Agency has distributed 9,300 liters of disinfectant, calling on farmers to report any ducks who have recently died to the agency. (cor/swd)

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