Spain orders culling of virtually one lakh minks after many check optimistic for coronavirus



According to reports, so far eight employees of the mink farm in the Aragon province of Spain have tested positive for the novel coronavirus

Health authorities in Spain have said that almost 100,000 minks at a firm in the northeastern part of the country are to be culled after many of them tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

As per a report in BBC, the outbreak was discovered in the province of Aragon after a farm employee’s wife contracted the virus in May. The report added that her husband and six other farm workers have tested positive for the disease as well.

As per the report, results of tests done on 13 July showed that 87 percent of the mink were infected with the virus leading to health authorities ordering the culling of all the 92,700 semi-aquatic animals.

Authorities have, however, said that the company that runs the farm will be provided with financial compensation.

RT.com reported that Aragon’s agriculture minister Joaquin Olana said that the mink will be slaughtered to avoid risk of human transmission after two more workers tested positive in the firm.

As per the report, the mink are believed to have been infected by one of the workers, but Olona said it is not clear if transmission is possible from animals to humans and vice versa.

As per a report in Mirror.co.uk, Aragon’s regional government has said that there has been “a massive transmission between the mink, so high that it has been decided to sacrifice all of them”.

The report added that this is the only mink farm in the region to suffer economic losses. It has not been operational since mid-May amid the major COVID-19 lockdown.

In an earlier press interaction, WHO epidemiologist Maria Van Kerhove had spoken about ongoing probes into cases in Denmark and the Netherlands stating that there were individuals who infected the mink and in turn some of the mink infected some people. However, she had said that it is a very limited transmission and the WHO is learning about “what this actually means in terms of transmission and what role they may play”.

This is however, not the first mink farm to face a coronavirus outbreak. As per a report by CNN, in May, Dutch authorities introduced mandatory testing in mink farms in the Netherlands after they said they believed a mink might have passed on the COVID-19 virus to a human. This lead to the culling of up to one million mink in two dozen farms in the country.

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