Welcome to 'Avian Influenza'
Avian influenza was first documetned in 1878 as a "fowl plague" that caused high mortality rates in chickens in Italy. It wasn't until 1955 that it was identified as an avian influenza virus that shared a genomic composition similar to that of human influenza viruses.
There are approximately 15 strains of avian influenza that annually infect birds around the world. The current outbreak is caused by the H5N1 strain, which is highly contagious and lethal for birds. Unlike other strains, H5N1 can be transmitted to humans, causing severe illness and even death.
About this Site
This site is addressed to those fifteen and up who would like to gain a basic understanding of bird flu. It contains information on the symptoms, history, and recommended safety precautions for bird flu. Those viewing the site should come away with an ability to talk intelligently about the basics of bird flu. They should feel up to date on one of the biggest issues of early 2006.