Thursday, 22 November 2007

Indoor Talk: Bird flu - A threat to wild bird conservation?

Thursday 22nd November '07

MNS Auditorium, Jalan Kelantan:
Attendance is Free of Charge.
All are welcome.

Since H5N1 Avian Influenza (AI) started its spread across Asia some five years ago, almost 200 people have died, millions of poultry have been culled and thousands of wild birds affected.

The media often portrays wild birds as the main source of the disease, but this is misleading as it is primarily a disease of poultry and the involvement of wild birds is highly questionable in most cases.
Despite this, there have been instances of wild bird culling in response to bird flu outbreaks. There are many questions about how the disease is transmitted, and what preventive measures can be taken to reduce transmission.
Mr Crawford Prentice, currently the International Technical Advisor for UNEP/GEF project developing flyway networks of protected wetlands for the Siberian Crane and other migratory waterbirds, will provide an overview on wild birds and AI based on international studies and suggest some measures that can be taken to reduce risks of AI transmission at sites of importance for migratory waterbirds.

Mr Prentice has lived and worked in Malaysia on and off since 1986, when he joined MNS and was active in the Selangor Bird Group.

His past work was for the Asian Wetland Bureau (now the Wetlands International - Asia Pacific) on conservation of wetlands and migratory waterbirds. He had also managed a DANCED project for WIAP on the integrated management of Tasek Bera in Pahang, Malaysia's first Ramsar site.

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