Bird Flu and its Common Symptoms

Bird flu, a virus that commonly affects bird but can also be to human beings. Unfortunately, when it affect human it is hard to diagnose the disease as it closely mimic regular flu. This is the reason why many people are interested in knowing how to recognize the symptoms and prevention for this disease, which unfortunately can be fatal if left untreated. Listed below are some of most common sign of bird flu to human.

• High Fever. Persons infected with bird flu typically become ill with a fever. Fevers can develop gradually or suddenly and most people have temperatures higher than 101 degrees.
• Shortness of breath or difficulty in breathing.
• Due to the inflammation and post-nasal drainage into the lungs, a person may also experience a serious and painful cough.
• Abdominal pain and loose bowels. This is one of the distinct symptoms of bird flu compare to a regular flu symptom.
• Vomiting.
• Bleeding of gums or nose. Another distinct symptom of bird flu.

If you suffer from these symptoms, it is suggested to consult a doctor immediately. Since this disease is highly contagious, your caretaker should do extra protection by wearing surgical masks and regularly washing their hands after taking good care of you. Bird flu can be deadly but it’s curable.

General Guidelines to Avoid Bird Flu

Avian influenza or mostly known as Bird flu, is a virus that affect birds and in worst scenario, can be spread to human being. It scares the whole world last 2003 when it spread through Europe and Asia. And until today, the idea of bird flu spreading again is still a nightmare for many of us. However, there are safety measures you can do to avoid having this type of flu, most especially if you are traveling in some regions of the world where bird flu outbreaks have occurred.

General Guidelines:

• Stay away from domesticated birds if you are in places that have encounter bird flu outbreaks. Avoid rural areas, farms and markets. Staying away also means not eating birds and chickens.
• Always wash your hands, using hot water and soap, or use a hand sanitizer as an alternative. Make sure it’s at least 60% alcohol.
• Before you travel, it is advisable that you get a flu shot. This will not protect against bird flu in particular, but will help reduce the risk of simultaneous infections by different flu viruses.
• Avoid eating raw eggs or undercooked eggs. Ensure that what you eat, particularly chicken are well-cooked.

Macaws and Bird Flu

medium_2689857765Whenever we think of pirates, a number of us will think of parrots too, and when we think of parrots, most of us will think of those parrots with long tail feathers, large beaks, and brightly-colored feathers in all the primary colors. Chances are you’re probably thinking of a macaw.

Macaws are grand, beautiful birds, and are mostly endemic to South America and the Carribean areas. These creatures have personalities as unique as the prints on their faces, and it may take some time before it will recognize you as its owner. However, with time, patience, and a little bit of kindness, these beautiful beasts may come to trust you implicitly.

However, are macaws as susceptible to bird flu as chickens? General veterinarian consensus says nay, but it is still best to be careful when shopping around for a pet macaw. If you notice your buyer has also been raising chickens, it is more than reasonable to take caution. Ask for some history of the bird, where it came from, how old is it, and so on. Do not hesitate to ask for a medical write-up; if the seller refuses to give you one, walk away. Once you do receive what you have required of your seller, it is best to next ask him or her which avian veterinarian he or she recommends.

photo credit: Tambako the Jaguar via photopin cc

Breathe Easy with Pigeons


They congregate in droves, and their iridescent gray-and-white plumage is unmistakeable. Pigeons are a city’s best-known birds, and people either love them or hate them. Tourist spots such as the Piazza San Marco in Venice and Trafalgar Square in London are often found teeming with them, and it is every tourist’s secret fantasy to run headlong into a flock and send them flying. Feeding pigeons also has become something of a locale pastime, thus spawning the song “Feed The Birds (Tuppence a Bag)” from the Disney musical motion picture Mary Poppins. People who love them wistfully stare at them as a vision of freedom above a bustling grimy city; people who hate them call them “rats with feathers” and scowl at them for stealing brioches from their plates as they sup outdoors. However, are pigeons really a potential threat to people with the advent of bird flu?

Thankfully, scientists have confirmed there is nothing to worry about around these birds. As a matter of fact, they are one of the most resistant to the H1N1 virus, which makes their presence in Asia and other continents something to sigh in relief about.

photo credit: papalars via photopin cc

Bird Flu Scares Asia Again

Bird flu is still known to be one of the deadliest virus up to the present. Well, this type of virus occur naturally among migrating birds, however, human can also be infected most especially those people who are working in a poultry or contaminated surfaces. Last 2003, Asia is the most affected continent when the Bird flu virus stroked. This 2012 and 2013, just when everybody though bird flu is already gone, it seems that it is spreading again in Vietnam, Thailand and other Asian countries.  And according to Huffingtonpost, Asia is still struggling to control the virus.

As this virus is fear to grow in the coming days, it is important that everyone is aware of its symptoms. If you are a foreigner especially vacationing in Asian countries, you might also want to learn Thai, Chinese, Filipino or other Asian language just to communicate well in some emergency situation. Anyway. here are the symptoms of bird flu reported in humans:

Sudden attack of cough and colds in where you do not really aware know how and why you got it;
Throat sore, then in times becomes pneumonia;
Feeling moderate or severe malaise and fatigue;
Muscle pain;
Difficulty in breathing;
Frequent sneezing with lot of mucous coming out.

The symptoms actually vary depending on the damage of the virus to your body. So, if you find yourself one of these symptoms, don’t waste time and consult a doctor immediately. The early you detect it, the faster you can be treated and relieved. Don’t be threatened, there are ways to cure it. Just be extra cautious of these symptoms.



And now, for some good news – many people associate rats with filth, infection, and disease, but there’s one very special type of rat that just might turn their perceptions around.

In Africa, Gambian Pouched rats are trained to sniff out land mines in fields. There critters measure about two hand-spans high when standing up, and are quickly becoming the new heroes of residents in the area. APOPO, a Belgian non=government organization, trains these rats and educates people who show interest and promise in being rat handlers. The monicker for these trained critters is HeroRATS, and rightfully so.

HeroRATS not only sniff out landmines, but also can detect the presence of tuberculosis and bird flu in human saliva. They have managed to quickly identify 300 cases of bird flu, cases that were undetectable, even by a microscope. Could these helpful heroes become the new breakthrough in the fight against bird flu? No one knows for sure, but as long as there’s handlers and yummy green bananas for them, these rats will keep sniffing on to people’s safety.

photo credit: rattyfied via photopin cc

Korea’s Not Taking Any Chances

After confirming a bird flu outbreak earlier this year, the South Korean government isn’t taking this lightly. Besides culling all poultry in the affected areas, they have secured enough drugs against the dreaded disease for 2.5 million people.There hasn’t been any human cases in the country but they’ve taken precaution by vaccinating all the staff involved in the culling of the mentioned poultries.

Although the drugs weren’t identified, one is confirmed: oseltamivir, also known as Tamiflu and is manufactured by Swiss pharmaceutical giant Roche Holding Ltd. This may seem drastic on the part of the government, but at least they are preparing for the worst.


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