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Aviaries at four LCSD major parks closed temporarily

The aviaries at four major parks managed by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department will be closed temporarily or cordoned off as a precautionary measure against the possible spread of avian influenza, a spokesman for the department said today (January 30).

The two walk-in aviaries in Hong Kong Park and Yuen Long Park will be closed, while the aviaries within enclosed areas at Hong Kong Zoological and Botanical Gardens and Kowloon Park will be cordoned off. Notices have been put up to advise the public of the arrangements.

The department's Senior Veterinary Officer and staff have been keeping a close watch over the health of the 1,700 or so birds in the four parks.

"The birds we keep are healthy and not a single case of infection has been detected. The temporary closures are purely precautionary," he said.

"We have also increased the number of times the aviaries are cleaned to three times daily to maintain a high level of hygiene."

Signs have been put up at all LCSD venues where there is a bird collection or where wild birds congregate to warn the public not to touch the birds or bird droppings.

As a health safety precaution, the public is also urged not to feed the birds or any wild birds at LCSD venues.

"Under the Pleasure Ground Regulation, it is an offence to feed or attempt to feed any birds at LCSD pleasure grounds and anyone found doing so may be prosecuted," the spokesman said.

Ends/Friday, January 30, 2004
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