The situation has caused concern along the coast of Chubut and other coastal areas of Argentina. Official reports confirm that bird flu has claimed the lives of 78 marine mammals, mainly sea lions. The alarming rise in deaths has led authorities to call for special care to prevent the spread of the virus.
Juan Lorenzani, president of the Argentine Animals Foundation, provided details about this unusual situation involving marine mammals. “In Argentina, no cases like this have ever been detected. Earlier this year, bird flu killings of birds were first reported in Peru, from where the virus spread to sea lions. This led to the declaration of a health emergency,” explains Lorenzani road.
The strain of bird flu that affects sea lions is highly contagious and aggressive. Lorenzani revealed that the problem first appeared in Tierra del Fuego, then spread to the Rionegro and Chubut, affecting various beaches in Patagonia until it reached the province of Buenos Aires. Mar del Plata is one of the places hardest hit by the epidemic, where 60 sea lion deaths have been registered.
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One of the main concerns surrounding the situation is whether the virus could affect humans. Lorenzani clarified that transmission of the virus to humans via sea lions has not been confirmed, but warned of the importance of taking precautions. “If anyone encounters a sea lion on the beach, live or dead, they should not approach it and keep a distance of 15 or 20 meters. Avoiding direct contact is crucial because the virus is spread in this way, It’s not airborne,” he stressed.
Authorities in Chubut province and other affected areas are working with wildlife experts to closely monitor the situation and take precautionary measures. In addition, we also call on the community to cooperate to protect the health of marine animals and to carefully consider precautionary recommendations to avoid any potential risks.
Meanwhile, Nadia Bravo, Deputy Director of Protected Areas of the Ministry of Tourism of Chubut Province, reported in the province: “There are external factors invading us and a decision must be made, the first measure is a preventive one. A 15-year moratorium on diving, snorkeling and kayaking with sea lions near their habitat for a few days.”
Additionally, Chubut provincial officials are asking the entire community to cooperate “This is a matter of awareness and prevention, if you see a wolf or a dead or endangered animal, do not approach it. Also prevent pets from doing this , and work with wildlife rangers.
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