H5N1 avian flu has struck a farm in Southern Germany, the country’s first case this year on a commercial poultry unit.

Tests confirmed that dead birds found at a poultry farm were infected with the virus in Wachenroth in Bavaria’s Erlangen-Hoechstadt.

More than 400 birds died over a brief period of time on the Bavarian farm. German officials applied the necessary control measures laid down under EU legislation which included sealing off the farm, culling the 160,000 birds and establishing a protection zone around the farm while officials investigate the outbreak.