Avian Influenza (AI) is a highly contagious viral disease to which all poultry species are susceptible.
Contamination of poultry can occur through direct contact with sick animals, or through exposure to contaminated materials. Furthermore, wild birds may be an important source of contamination as they are often carriers of the virus without being visibly ill.
After its eradication in 2017, Avian Influenza (AI), and more specifically the highly pathogenic variant, has been detected again in November 2020, first in wild birds and then in a poultry establishment and a captive birds holding. The outbreaks were notified to the OIE and therefore, Belgium lost its HPAI free status. The situation has since stabilized. For more details, see “Situation in Belgium”.