Chickens infected with highly pathogenic avian influenza have been found at a poultry farm in the town of Taragi in Kumamoto Prefecture, southwestern Japan, the farm ministry said Sunday.
This is the first bird flu case reported in Japan in three years.
A total of some 112,000 chickens at the farm and another the same farmer operates in the village of Sagara in the prefecture will be culled to prevent the disease from spreading.
The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries convened a panel of experts to discuss measures to deal with the incident. While the route of the infection is still uncertain, Prof. Toshihiro Ito of Tottori University, chairman of the panel, told reporters after its meeting that migratory birds may have brought bird flu viruses from South Korea hit by the disease.
The probability for the Kanto region to be hit by a powerful earthquake - lower 6 or higher on the Japanese intensity scale of 7 - within 30 years has risen, the government panel's latest quake probability map showed Friday. (The Japan News)
A researcher embroiled in a fabrication scandal that has rocked Japan's scientific establishment said Friday she would resign after failing to reproduce results of what was once billed as a ground-breaking study on stem cells. (Japan Today)
The Niigata prefectural government started clearing a section of National Highway Route 405 in Tsunan in the prefecture on Friday, after a landslide mixed with snow blocked off about 50 meters of the road the night before. (The Japan News)
The Chiba Public Safety Commission has banned a 29-year-old man from Matsudo, Chiba Prefecture, from riding a bicycle for 90 days, after he was found guilty of cycling under the influence of "kiken" quasi-legal drugs. (Japan Times)
Heavy snow caused a power outage along parts of the Joetsu Shinkansen Line for about six hours on Sunday morning, leaving some 300 passengers trapped in a bullet train for 2½ hours near the mountainous southern border of Niigata Prefecture. (Japan Times)