ANTARCTICA — Researchers have detected a new kind of bird flu in Adelie penguins for the first time, yet the virus does not seem to make them sick.
File photo: Gerard LACZ-VWpics/VWPICS/Gerard LACZ
The report published Tuesday in mBio, an online journal of the American Society for Microbiology, said that this virus (H11N2) is unlike any other avian flu known to science. In three percent of the birds tested, live infectious virus was found, says the AFP.
File photo: Zhang Jiansong/Xinhua/ZUMA
The 300 penguins studied were from Antarctica and it remains unclear as to how the virus made it down to the South Pole, how it didn't cause the birds to be sick, and how it was able to survive some of the harshest conditions on earth.
File photo: Xinhua/ZUMA
The best known kind of bird flu is H5N1, believed to be carried by migrating ducks, and has killed tens of millions of birds around the world.
No live avian influenza virus has ever been detected in penguins or other Antarctic birds before.
Main photo (File): Alan J. Scullard/VW Pics/ZUMA