Nova Scotia animal rehab raises money for avian influenza quarantine space
As cases of avian influenza mount in the Maritimes, the Cobequid Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre in Brookfield, N.S., is raising money to build a space for birds to quarantine.
Avian influenza H5N1, is a highly pathogenic disease that affects a bird’s respiratory tract, and can eventually kill them — in the past few months, cases have been reported in every Maritime province.
“It’s very important that we have a room where they can be comfortable,” said wildlife operations manager Brenda Boates. “It would make it so much more efficient for us to work with these poor sick birds.”
The group is hoping to raise $7,000 to have a building delivered and set up.
Boates says when new birds arrive to the centre they need to be isolated, sometimes for as long as 30 days. Adding that isolation is necessary because the disease is spread by contact.
“That means through feces, touching the bird, if the bird coughs or sneezes,” said Boates.
An intake process that used to be relatively simple, Boates says, has turned into a more complicated affair.
“Now when the birds come, we get a call ahead of time, the birds are brought to us by the department of natural resources and renewables. We are donning full PPE,” she said.
The group is currently using a modified garage to isolate the birds.
Donations to the fundraising campaign can be made by visiting the Canada Helps website.
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