London A parrot that died in quarantine in Britain was diagnosed with bird flu, a British government official said Friday.
It was not immediately clear whether the bird had the H5N1 strain of bird flu, which has devastated poultry stocks across Asia and killed 61 people in the last two years.
The bird, imported from South America, died in quarantine, said Debby Reynolds, the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs' chief veterinarian.
“The confirmed case does not affect the U.K.'s official disease-free status because the disease has been identified in imported birds during quarantine,” Ms. Reynolds said, meaning that the bird was not officially considered to have died in Britain because it had not passed quarantine and thus never officially entered Britain.
Ms. Reynolds said the diseased bird arrived in Britain in September. It was not immediately clear when it died.