Health and Lifestyle


Bird Flu

 What is Bird Flu??

Bird Flu, or H5N1 to give it its scientific viral name, first hit the news in 1997, when there was an outbreak in Hong Kong. Eighteen poultry workers became infected when the virus managed to jump the species barrier to humans, six of those died.The Hong Kong Goverment responded by having a mass bird cull.1.5 million birds including victims of the Bird Flue itself either died or were destroyed. 

If a Pandemic ocurrs an you show symptoms of the
Flue, you should contact your GP immediately.
Although there is presently no proven vaccine developed
for Bird Flue, there are precautionary measures that........

Are Flu Strains Like H5N1 A New Occcurrence

There is a "Flu Season" every year, which occurs in the Winter months. Although being cold and wet doesnt actually give you colds and Flue, it does lower your immune system and make you mare succeptable to them. The more people that have a lowered immune system, the more catch the Flu, and so the more can transmit it to others etc.

Every forty years or so statistically, a Flu virus mutates into a form not previously seen before. The results are that as mankind has not been exposed to the new strain before, then there is no natural immunity. This coupled with the "Flue Season" causes a dangerous and deadly scenario.Scientists state that we are well overdue a major Flue Pandemic, the last one occurred in 1918, when the infamous "Spanish Flu" emerged, and enguled the world in a major Flu Pandemic that killed millions of people. 

Scientists at the time did not have the technology of today, and also as it was so deadly, it was thought too dangerous to work with victims bodies. Recently though and with the help of Genetic Engineering, there has been a greater understanding of the Virus that caused the last major Flue Pandemic. 


A woman victim's body, who died in the 1918 Flu pandemic had been preserved by the permafrost where it was buried in Alaska. Scientists have been able to use this and also the remains of two Spanish soldiers known to have died from the Flu, to Genetically re-create the virus.

The virus is thought to be a mutation arising from the combining of Human and Pig Flu viruses.This is when viruses of different species "swap genes", and is known as recombination.

So the Avian Flu strain infecting humans is not a new thing. In fact it is thought that all 16 groups of Flu virus that infect humans originated from birds, in particular wet birds such as ducks. The virus's have adapted themselves around their immune systems and so do not make them sick in themselves.Allowing them to carry the virus with them and spread it worldwide with migratory paths etc. This is the reason why there has been so much "Hype" about monitoring birds in wetlands and keeping Chickens and Domestic Birds away from them.