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Ilocos Norte now bird flu-free

BAGUIO CITY, Philippines — The province of Ilocos Norte has been declared free from avian influenza or bird flu, according to the Department of Agriculture (DA).

In February, the DA identified Ilocos as among nine regions affected by avian influenza.

The cases were recorded in the towns of Bacarra, Pasuquin and Sarrat as well as Laoag City in Ilocos Norte.

Provincial veterinarian Loida Valenzuela said that as soon as the virus was detected, the local government created teams for disease mapping and laboratory surveillance to contain the spread of the disease.

Eight towns in the province’s first district were immediately identified as “areas of concern,” prompting the provincial government to conduct cleansing and disinfection.

By October, the infected poultry farms were cleared of avian influenza.