Bird flu confirmed in colony of sea lions in Escollera Sur de Necochea They have attracted the attention of the Argentine scientific community and the authorities who study this fact. Confirmed by the National Produce Health and Quality Service (Senasa) outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) H5 among sea lions in Buenos Aires and Santa Cruz, Numerous sea lion deaths have been reported in different parts of the country, with confirmed cases in Santa Cruz and Necochea.
Experts are investigating the contagion and causes of the unusual spread of bird flu among marine mammals.
The unexpected phenomenon has raised concerns among the scientific community and local authorities, as sea lions are not a species traditionally associated with bird flu. The detection of the virus in this species and its spread led to containment and precautionary measures, including limiting cooperation between beaches and government agencies.
positive case High voltage AI H5 In sea lions, they spread to different coastal regions from Necochea to Santa Cruz, creating uncertainty about how the virus spread among these mammals. In addition, similar cases have been detected in other coastal areas such as Mar del Plata and Ourense Terme.
How sea lions got bird flu
The scientific community is working to understand the source of infection and the factors behind its spread, which may have implications for marine animals and human health. Although the exact cause of these outbreaks has not been determined, it has been speculated that sea lions may have come into contact with infected birds by eating them.
sea lion with one hair (Sophora flavescens), known to inhabit the coast of South America, is at the center of this worrisome situation. Contagion in these animals appears to be associated with direct contact with secretions from infected birds. Although humans can also be infected with the virus, few cases have been recorded so far.
Senasa has a clear commitment to addressing this animal health emergency and works closely with institutions at municipal, provincial and national levels. Together, Intervention protocols to address this threat are outlined Coordinate health strategies and actions to control outbreaks and provide critical information to communities.
However, how the sea lion contagion is triggered remains a mystery. “It is speculated that they may have come into contact with infected birds by consuming them as food,” an official source revealed.
This theory points to the complexity of interconnected ecosystems and how the health of one species can have unforeseen effects on others.
The severity of the situation has also spread to Tierra del Fuego, where 21 sea lions died, at least seven of which were infected with the bird flu virus. Faced with this situation, the provincial government took precautionary measures by installing billboards in the city of Rio Grande to restrict access to the coastal reserve. According to Senasa Resolution 153/2021, the disease is highly contagious in Argentina and should be notified, threatening not only marine fauna, but also food security and human health.
Argentina has been battling bird flu since last year, when the country lost its “bird flu-free” status due to endemic outbreaks. Despite efforts and recent outbreak closures of commercial establishments, the health emergency remains and nationwide epidemiological surveillance and prevention efforts remain in focus.
Another worrying factor is the ability of migratory birds to carry the virus even when they are asymptomatic. Transmission can occur when these birds interact with poultry in industrial hatcheries, creating a dangerous cycle of disease transmission. The World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Organization for Animal Health (WHO) have sounded the alarm about the continuing risk of the disease to wildlife and humans.
As the scientific community and authorities seek to contain this evolving crisis, it is becoming increasingly clear that understanding the interplay between species, ecosystems and human health is critical to preventing future health emergencies.