Sep 5, 2008 (CIDRAP News) – Agriculture officials in Idaho announced yesterday that they were investigating an outbreak of low-pathogenic avian influenza at a game farm in the southwestern part of the state after a federal lab confirmed the virus in pheasants.The virus has been identified as subtype H5N8, according to a Sep 3 report that the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) filed with the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE). The farm contains about 30,000 game birds that are raised for hunting activities, the report said. Besides pheasants, the farm has chukars, partridges, and mallard ducks.State officials quarantined the farm on Aug 29 but have not culled any birds at the site, located in Payette County. However, Larry Hawkins, a USDA spokesman, said 300 birds that the farm shipped to California for a bird dog event before the virus was detected were quarantined and culled, the Associated Press (AP) reported today.The farm’s owner did not report an unusual number of bird deaths, but in late August sent three dead pheasants to a lab at Pennsylvania State University for a diagnostic work-up, according to the OIE report. The lab found Pasturella and Mycoplasma in the samples. Routine tests also revealed avian influenza. Sequence testing at the USDA’s National Veterinary Services Laboratory led to the H5N8 finding on Sep 3.The virus seems to trace back only to the pheasant pen, which contains about 1,000 birds, the report said.Officials have not determined the source of the virus but suspect that it came from contact with wild birds. Bill Barton, a veterinarian with Idaho’s Department of Agriculture, told the AP that the pheasants were kept in an outside pen that was covered with plastic mesh. He said they could have been exposed to the virus from wild birds that flew or roosted overhead.David Halvorson, DVM, a veterinary pathologist and avian flu expert at the University of Minnesota in St. Paul, told CIDRAP News that a wild-bird source of the virus sounds plausible. “They [the game birds] are like live decoys. They’ll attract wild birds to their pens because of the feed and water,” he said.Though low-pathogenic H5N8 hasn’t been seen in the United States over the past several years, there’s nothing alarming about finding the virus at the Idaho farm, he said. “It’s not unusual to find an oddball low-path virus.”Barton said the findings of the investigation will determine how long the birds should be quarantined and if culling is necessary, the AP reported. He said authorities are testing birds at farms within a 2-mile radius of the site and disinfecting the affected game farm.See also:Sep 4 Idaho Department of Agriculture press release
Image courtesy of Port of BarcelonaCarnival Corporation inaugurated its Helix cruise center at the Port of Barcelona that will accommodate the company’s cruise ships powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG).The terminal covering 12,500 square meters cost €46 million ($54.9 million) represents Carnival Corporation’s largest combined terminal investment in Europe, the company said in a statement.Eight brands from Carnival Corporation, AIDA Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Costa Cruises, Cunard, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Seabourn and P&O Cruises (UK), visit Barcelona throughout the year, with six of those eight brands operating full or partial homeporting in Barcelona in 2018.The new terminal is also in line with Port of Barcelona’s plan proposed in 2016 to reduce emissions from port activities as Carnival Corporation’s LNG-fueled ships will call at the terminal.Last year, Barcelona became the first cruise port in the Mediterranean with facilities to supply cruise ships with LNG.In total, Carnival Corporation currently has agreements in place to build nine fully LNG-powered cruise ships across four of its nine global cruise brands in coming years.
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Thank you for your input. +6 Vote up Vote down Jim · 264 weeks ago AND know the main culprit, the school board…… they go on for hours and then come out and say nothing happened and then adjourn the meeting. Report Reply 0 replies · active 264 weeks ago +3 Vote up Vote down bob · 264 weeks ago School boards are notorious.. in any city Report Reply 0 replies · active 264 weeks ago +6 Vote up Vote down Guest · 264 weeks ago The city council doesn’t even have trust among themselves. Report Reply 0 replies · active 264 weeks ago 0 Vote up Vote down Amber · 264 weeks ago Well said, James! Very well written! Report Reply 0 replies · active 264 weeks ago +4 Vote up Vote down Wellington · 264 weeks ago Why is it that some articles you aren’t able to comment on? They have to be approved by an admin anyway, so why not allow our feedback on every article?? Report Reply 0 replies · active 264 weeks ago Post a new comment Enter text right here! 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Tweet this comment Cancel Submit Comment Subscribe to None Replies All new comments Commentary by James Jordan, Sumner Newscow â€” The word â€œtransparencyâ€ has been used around city council meetings, and the city itself, a lot recently. I have been impressed over the last several months with the transparency that is happening at Wellington City Hall. Documents of all kinds are readily available, and there have not been all that many executive sessions of late.James JordanThat surge in transparency took a pretty big hit last week when the city met with the hospital board and doctors for two hours behind closed doors.Had they taken a 10-20 minute executive session for some legal matter, and then held an open discussion, I doubt anyone would have even noticed. There are legitimate reasons to have an executive session, and sometimes it is the right thing to do. But executive sessions are not ever required.The city is dealing with some big issues, and the hospital is one of the main ones. There are issues that need worked out and discussions that need to be had. However, doing them in secret is not the way to get public support, or the way to develop trust between the city and citizens who foot the bill through their tax dollars.The executive session was clearly a violation of the Kansas Open Meetings Act in my understanding of the law.The executive session was called for attorney-client privilege. The law clearly states that under this reason, it may include only the council and its attorneys. It specifically says a third party may not be present because that destroys attorney-client privilege.After the meeting, employee issues were also cited as a reason, and that too is a legitimate reason. However, the law clearly states the city may not meet in executive session to talk about employees other than its own.I suppose it could be argued that since the hospital is owned by the city, it did not meet with a third party, but that would really be a stretch. Even if you could argue that as the letter of the law, it certainly violates the spirit of the law.I will admit it is easier to hold discussions in private, where you can say things you might not say in public.Council members have even bristled at the fact that media now attend their work sessions, which is where issues are actually discussed. The regularÂ meetings are pretty much a formality. Votes on issues are rarely surprising if you have been paying attention to the work sessions.But while it may be easier to call a private meeting, it is not the best thing to do when you want public support and trust.Now while I do feel the meeting was illegal, I am not saying anything needs to be done. There’s no need to smack anyone’s wrist, which is about all Kansas would do anyway. I would just encourage the city council to consider its actions more carefully in the future.The council members did discuss their utility rate issues publicly, and that was a positive thing for transparency. You may not like paying higher utility bills, but at least you know why they are going up.It comes down to trust.We have entrusted the council by electing them. We need to be able to trust them to do the right thing, even when the right thing is something we might not agree with.The council alsoÂ needs to trust us enough to be willing to talk about issues in open session.It isn’t always easy, but it is the way to build trust among the citizenry.Follow us on Twitter.