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Old 02-12-2020, 11:31 AM   #91
WebSlave
I am surprised the guy didn't admit that it was his lunch from one of the local Chinese "wet markets". You do have to wonder, though, how many others might have slipped in under the radar. Why someone would think bringing something like this into another country is OK, really escapes me.

There are some quite serious "bird flu" viruses floating around there that haven't yet mutated to where they can be easily transmissible to humans. I believe it is H7N1, as an example, that has a quite alarming "kill ratio". If this were to make the jump as an airborne human pathogen, it would be quite a serious event for humanity.

Of course, the jury is still out on how serious this latest coronavirus event is going to be. For the Chinese, it is quite serious, but outside of China, well, time will tell. I think it warrants keeping an eye on it. It is a curious beast.
 
Old 02-12-2020, 03:20 PM   #92
Lucille
Apparently some of these birds are a delicacy
https://www.scmp.com/lifestyle/artic...ird-extinction
 
Old 02-12-2020, 07:03 PM   #93
WebSlave
Can't be that much meat on their bones. They probably just taste like chicken anyway, so why not just eat chicken?
 
Old 02-12-2020, 09:27 PM   #94
Lucille
From the NYT:
Chinese reports had suggested the coronavirus outbreak might be slowing, but then new numbers showed the largest one-day increase recorded so far.
Wednesday, February 12, 2020 8:54 PM EST
The sharp rise in reported cases illustrates how hard it still is to grasp the extent and severity of the coronavirus outbreak in China, particularly inside the epicenter, where thousands of sick people remain untested for the illness.
 
Old 02-13-2020, 10:23 PM   #95
Insomniac101
Ain't that the truth! 😕
Attached Images
 
 
Old 02-14-2020, 12:33 AM   #96
WebSlave
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucille View Post
From the NYT:
Chinese reports had suggested the coronavirus outbreak might be slowing, but then new numbers showed the largest one-day increase recorded so far.
Wednesday, February 12, 2020 8:54 PM EST
The sharp rise in reported cases illustrates how hard it still is to grasp the extent and severity of the coronavirus outbreak in China, particularly inside the epicenter, where thousands of sick people remain untested for the illness.
There has been talk that WHO is on the ground in Beijing and have insisted on more accurate reporting of figures. So it's entirely possible that the latest figure is actually the first accurate one provided. But just rumors, I guess. I do see that the next reported figures are also elevated quite a bit above what prior numbers were showing. So either the reality of the situation is now being more accurately portrayed and things have been worse than China has been saying all along, or there has been a BIG jump in actual cases. Not sure which is the better scenario, though.

There is talk that likely China isn't bothering with the testing any longer anyway. If you have symptoms, you are considered as infected. Of course, asymptomatic cases will not be detected, but I doubt they were being tested anyway. Medical facilities in China are likely WAY over taxed as it is.

US "confirmed" is at 15 now. At least the numbers don't seem to be exploding on us. But the night might still be young.

An interesting point is that so far, no one that doesn't have Chinese heritage has died from this virus. Again, that is SO FAR.

There are strong suspicions that China knows exactly what is going on, based on their strong reactions to the virus early on. There have been other flu outbreaks there, and they have never reacted as strongly in those cases. Some feel that there was an accident at the biosafety level 4 (BSL4) lab just outside of Wuhan China. I believe that is the only level 4 lab in China.

Lots of rumors and theories filling in the space left by lack of facts.

Just watched the movie "Contagion" tonight. We've watched it before, but it's a completely different movie when you have some real world context as a reference to follow along with the script.
 
Old 02-14-2020, 08:54 AM   #97
bcr229
Virus renews safety concerns about slaughtering wild animals

https://apnews.com/caa64052d429b2b0fa56b1d5caeab99b

Virus renews safety concerns about slaughtering wild animals

By SAM McNEIL and CANDICE CHOI
February 14, 2020 GMT

BEIJING (AP) — China cracked down on the sale of exotic species after an outbreak of a new virus in 2002 was linked to markets selling live animals. The germ turned out to be a coronavirus that caused SARS.

The ban was later lifted, and the animals reappeared. Now another coronavirus is spreading through China, so far killing 1,380 people and sickening more than 64,000 — eight times the number sickened by SARS.

The suspected origin? The same type of market.

With more than 60 million people under lockdown in more than a dozen Chinese cities, the new outbreak is prompting calls to permanently ban the sale of wildlife, which many say is being fueled by a limited group of wealthy people who consider the animals delicacies. The spreading illness also serves as a grim reminder that how animals are handled anywhere can endanger people everywhere.

“There’s a vast number of viruses in the animal world that have not spread to humans, and have the potential to do so,” said Robert Webster, an expert on influenza viruses at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee.

SARS and the current outbreak of COVID-19 are not the only diseases in people traced back to animals. The killing and sale of what is known as bushmeat in Africa is thought to be a source for Ebola. Bird flu likely came from chickens at a market in Hong Kong in 1997. Measles is believed to have evolved from a virus that infected cattle.

Scientists have not yet determined exactly how the new coronavirus first infected people. Evidence suggests it originated in bats, which infected another animal that spread it to people at a market in the southeastern city of Wuhan. The now-shuttered Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market advertised dozens of species such as giant salamanders, baby crocodiles and raccoon dogs that were often referred to as wildlife, even when they were farmed.

Of the 33 samples from the Wuhan market that tested positive for the coronavirus, officials say 31 were from the area where wildlife booths were concentrated. Compared with long domesticated livestock like chickens and pigs, researchers say less is known about the viruses that circulate in wild animals.

The Wuhan market was also like many other “wet markets” in Asia and elsewhere, where animals are tied up or stacked in cages. Activists say it’s difficult to distinguish between those that were legally farmed and those that may have been illegally hunted. The animals are often killed on site to ensure freshness. The messy mix raises the tiny odds that a new virus will jump to people handling the animals and start to spread, experts say.

“You’ve got live animals, so there’s feces everywhere. There’s blood because of people chopping them up,” said Peter Daszak, president of EcoHealth Alliance, which works to protect wildlife and public health from emerging diseases.

And more frequent global travel and trade means there’s greater risk for outbreaks to spread, Daszak said.

China’s taste for wildlife is relatively new, prompted by the country’s economic growth, said Peter Li, who studies Chinese politics at the University of Houston. But with the outbreak upending lives across the country, many on Chinese social media are expressing frustration that rich people’s appetite for wild animals is again endangering everyone else.

“This is the second time … the first is SARS, this time is Wuhan. We don’t want a third time,” Lai Xinping, a project cost assessor, said by phone from her home in Sichuan.

“We hate them too, and we are blamed,” said Tao Yiwei, a 36-year-old homemaker. She is among those who want the temporary ban on wildlife, enacted to contain the current outbreak, to be permanent.

There are signs the Chinese government may make more lasting changes to how exotic species are raised and sold. This month, Chinese leader Xi Jinping said the country should “resolutely outlaw and harshly crack down” on the illegal wildlife trade because of the public health risks it poses.

In the eastern province of Anhui, officials sealed farms breeding species like badgers and bamboo rats. In the port city of Tianjin, authorities say their crackdown on the sale of wildlife caught six traders, including three who were selling pythons and parrots.

All told, officials say about 1.5 million markets and online operators nationwide have been inspected since the outbreak began. About 3,700 have been shut down, and around 16,000 breeding sites have been cordoned off.

It’s not clear how the measures will play out over time. Before the outbreak began, it was legal in China to sell 54 species like pangolins and civets — as long as they were raised on farms . That made it difficult to distinguish between legal and illegal wildlife in wet markets, and enforcement was lax, said Jinfeng Zhou of China Biodiversity, Conservation and Green Development Foundation, an environmental group based in Beijing.

He pointed to a widely shared image of a Wuhan market advertisement listing 72 species, including peacocks and bullfrogs, as proof that the trade is too lucrative to be stopped by anything less than a total ban on all wildlife. “The profit is huge ... like drugs,” Jinfeng said.

Others disagree, arguing that banning the wildlife trade is not a realistic way to reduce risk, especially in poorer regions of the world where it can be an important food source. They say improved monitoring, regulation or public education may better control the problem. When wildlife is farmed, for example, it allows for greater surveillance and testing for viruses, said Daszak of EcoHealth Alliance.

Even if China successfully regulates or bans it, the wildlife trade is likely to continue elsewhere. Recent visits to wet markets in the island of Sulawesi in Indonesia and in the coastal city of Doula in Cameroon revealed similar conditions to wet markets in China. Vendors were slaughtering and grilling bats, dogs, rats, crocodiles and snakes, and sanitary measures were scant.

Ongoing destruction of species’ habitats will likely bring people into closer contact with animals and their viruses, said Raina Plowright, a University of Montana researcher who studies how diseases spread from wildlife to people.

“We are inevitably going to be exposed,” she said.

___

Associated Press writers Niniek Karmini in Jakarta, Indonesia, Maria Cheng in London, Malcolm Ritter and Kathy Young in New York, and researchers Liu Zheng and Yu Bing in Beijing, and Chen Si in Shanghai contributed to this report.
 
Old 02-14-2020, 09:30 AM   #98
Lucille
Quote:
Originally Posted by WebSlave View Post
more accurate reporting of figures.
I have read that those who have died of the virus but had not been diagnosed through a scan or test were not counted by some officials in China as COVID-19 deaths, so is accurate only the figure of diagnosed deaths or all those that are thought to have died of the virus?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bcr229 View Post
Others disagree, arguing that banning the wildlife trade is not a realistic way to reduce risk, especially in poorer regions of the world where it can be an important food source.
I cannot imagine how such a ban could be enforced. Hunting has been a traditional way throughout the world for those who are poor to help put food on the table or exchange the meat for other necessities. Possibly the large wet markets might be banned, but that too might not happen as such a ban might put pressure on governments to provide for the hungry.
 
Old 02-14-2020, 11:28 AM   #99
bcr229
The problem isn't the hunting per se, it's that wild animals are being trapped, taken live to these markets, and slaughtered in unsanitary conditions. Any diseases or parasites they are carrying then spread quickly to a large number of other animals and/or people.
 
Old 02-14-2020, 12:29 PM   #100
WebSlave
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucille View Post
I have read that those who have died of the virus but had not been diagnosed through a scan or test were not counted by some officials in China as COVID-19 deaths, so is accurate only the figure of diagnosed deaths or all those that are thought to have died of the virus?
From what I understand they were fudging the numbers by claiming deaths actually caused by the infection, such as from pneumonia, heart attack, or other organ failures, were not actually from the virus infection itself. Kind of like claiming someone wasn't killed by a fall from a roof, but by the sudden stop caused by hitting the ground.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucille View Post
I cannot imagine how such a ban could be enforced. Hunting has been a traditional way throughout the world for those who are poor to help put food on the table or exchange the meat for other necessities. Possibly the large wet markets might be banned, but that too might not happen as such a ban might put pressure on governments to provide for the hungry.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bcr229 View Post
The problem isn't the hunting per se, it's that wild animals are being trapped, taken live to these markets, and slaughtered in unsanitary conditions. Any diseases or parasites they are carrying then spread quickly to a large number of other animals and/or people.
Yeah, I believe sanitation is the real problem. I watched a video of one of those wet markets, and I didn't see any facilities anywhere for people to wash their hands. Lord only knows what they all used for bathroom facilities at those places. That included the customers as well as the vendors. So that introduces the possibility of the chicken or the egg problem. It would be just as easy to believe that the virus was introduced by a customer already infected walking along handling a lot of the animals and food items as it would that the virus came from one of the animals initially.

From what I have read, Chinese tend to prefer fresh meat and produce from such markets, not really having grocery supermarkets like we have in the USA. So going to the wet markets is just part of their often daily routine.

But there is still that coincidental fact of that BSL-4 lab close to the epicenter of the virus infection. I also read some speculation that one or more of the low paid animal handlers might conceivably have sold laboratory animals to or at one or more of those wet markets. Evidently that lab has had noted incidences of accidents in the past with pathogens escaping.

Read a rumor last night that the virus has mutated in Brighton, England, becoming easier for human to human infection. I have noted several people saying that this coronavirus "changes rapidly". But again, all rumors. But if it is mutating rapidly, we could be dealing with a plethora of completely different organisms as it passes through hosts and self modifies. Some strains may become more benign, and others become more virulent over time. Perhaps it will eventually become something that finds a survival advantage in not killing off it's host.

Still seems to be very slow moving in areas outside of Asia and in relation to seriously impacting non-Asian peoples. Which sure does bring up a whole lot of other questions about what the heck is really going on.
 

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