Sunday, October 23, 2005

Birds of a feather

These are stressful times indeed. Its the year-end and everybody is thinking of a vacation to de-stress before a new year with new challenges dawn upon us. But our feather 'friends' are putting a damper on all the planning. I say 'friends' because, like human flu, bird flu is not to be blamed on birds - they are just the carriers. The problem with birds is that they migrate from one place to another at great distances apart fairly regularly according to the climatic conditions, thereby easily spreading whatever virus they made be carrying. So far, the instrument to tackle this problem has been fairly blunt, which is to cull (or kill) all the birds in the flock so long as ONE of them is found with the flu. But there is no other better way, so far. So I can understand if farmers do not report their sick fowls for fear that their entire livelihood will, literally, be buried. This is the dilemma - not to report means that more than their animals' lives will be at stake, eventually.

How is modern man going to solve this problem, which is widening in geographical scope? Surely, flu pills can only go so far. Herein lies the most serious challenge yet to the survival of many - and I am not referring to our feathered friends.

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