+++ Confirmed: Avian flu virus found in White-tailed Eagle in Germany +++
I have often wondered if White-tailed Eagles can be infected with avian influenza. As it turned out, the answer to this question is yes. According to the newspaper shz.de, the Friedrich-Loeffler-Institute (FLI)
confirmed today the infection of a White-tailed Eagle with highly pathogenic avian influenza subtype H5N8. The bird was unable to fly when it was found near Lake Ploen (Schleswig-Holstein) some days ago. On November 8 the FLI reported in a press release
that wildfowl infected with bird flu were discovered in this region.
“If highly pathogenic avian influenza strikes rare birds of prey, this may have crucial impact on the predator species itself, but also on the food web in which it interacts.” (Gunnar Gunnarsson, Elsa Jourdain, Jonas Waldenström, Björn Helander, Peter Lindberg, Johan Elmberg, Neus Latorre-Margalef, and Björn Olsen. Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases. May 2010, 10(4): 387-390)