Hundreds of thousands of birds at a poultry farm in Russia's southern Krasnodar Terroritory are being destroyed following an outbreak of bird flu.
Russia's agricultural watchdog says the lethal HRN1 avian flu virus was discovered after some 500 chickens died on September 4, RIA Novosti reported Monday.
The day after the infection was confirmed, 22,000 birds were slaughtered.
Officials say by the time the operation ends, 248,000 chickens will be culled in an effort to prevent the outbreak from spreading.
So far, no human deaths from bird flu have been reported in Russia.
In 2006, more than a million birds were culled, slightly less than the number recorded in 2005.
Officials consider Russia's Krasnodar Territory at higher risk for bird flu because it is on the route migrating birds take.
However, the World Health Organization says most of the spread of bird flu is through poultry and the poultry trade.
Copyright 2007 by United Press International
Explore further: Superbug in SE Michigan shows recent decline