BEIJING, Jan. 13 (Xinhua) -- Central China's Hubei Province has reported an outbreak of H5N1 in poultry, the Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) announced Monday.
Chickens at a farm in Wanjia village of Yangxin County showed symptoms of suspected avian flu and 3,200 died on Jan. 7.
The National Avian Influenza Reference Laboratory confirmed the epidemic was H5N1 bird flu after testing samples collected from the farm, according to the MOA.
Local authorities have sealed off and sterilized the infected area, where a total of 46,800 chickens have been culled and safely disposed of to prevent the disease from spreading, according to the ministry.
Bird flu, or avian influenza, is a contagious disease of animal origin caused by viruses that normally infect only birds and, less commonly, pigs. It can be fatal to humans.