The Agriculture Ministry warned against picking up or moving the ducks at the Salina Nature Reserve in a bid to protect the local poultry farming industry.
This follows reports that surfaced last week stating that hundreds of ducks were dying at Salina due a contaminated water source.
However, tests made on the ducks resulted in positive findings of Influenza A subtype H6 (H6Nx). Whilst this poses no risk of illness to humans, it can be transmitted to other birds and domestic poultry – putting the entire Maltese industry at risk.
“To safeguard local farming (especially poultry) and wild birds, the Directorate is relocating the feral waterfowls from Salina Nature Reserve to be kept under the direct monitoring of the Directorate for further epidemiological studies,” the Agriculture Ministry said.
Picking up or moving said ducks without the necessary approvals from the Veterinary Regulation Directorate might spread the virus to other animals in Malta, thus putting at risk the poultry farming industry.