Martin W

    seems reports coming from Russia are rather contradictory.

    No shooting off of migratory birds in Russia to ward off avian flu

    MOSCOW, March 7 (Itar-Tass) – There will be no shooting of migratory
    birds in Russia as a measure to ward off avian flu, the general
    director of the Center for Wildlife Protection said at a news
    conference on Tuesday referring to instructions by the
    Rospotrebnadzor consumer rights watchdog.

    “If we shoot off birds, we shall trigger an unpredictable scenario
    of the epidemic with our own hands,” Alexei Zimenko said. “Birds
    will start looking for quieter areas, while dead or wounded birds
    will be a pray of predators and crows,” he added. This will only
    contribute to the spread of the epidemic, the specialist emphasized.
    Besides, the shooting operation would be very costly, he said.

    The president of the Russian Union for Bird Protection, Viktor
    Zubakin, told the news conference that “ornithologists advise not to
    open a wild fowl hunting season this year”. “One can contract the
    virus when disjointing fowl,” he stressed.

    According to the Ministry for Emergency Situations, about 1.5 million
    domestic birds have already died of bird flu in Russia. Alone 752,000
    of them have died in February and early in March. A mass arrival of
    migratory birds is expected later.