France confirms severe H5N8 bird flu outbreak on duck farm

Paris (Reuters) – The French farm ministry said on Tuesday that highly pathogenic H5N8 bird flu had been found on a duck farm in the southwest of the country, confirming France’s first farm outbreak of the virus this year.

The outbreak was first reported on Monday but at the time it was unclear what strain of the virus it was.

Bird flu has been spreading rapidly in Europe, putting the poultry industry on alert after previous outbreaks led to the culling of tens of millions of birds.