Russia reported two outbreaks of severe H5 bird flu virus - OIE

PARIS (Reuters) - Russia reported two outbreaks of highly contagious bird flu virus among backyard birds in the southwestern part of the country, the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) said on Wednesday, citing a report from the Russian farm ministry.

The H5 avian influenza virus was detected in domestic birds including geese, hens, guinea fowls in the Republic of Kalmykia, near the Caspian Sea, the ministry said in the report posted on the OIE website.

However, it was still unclear whether it was the H5N8 virus which has hit wild birds and farms in several countries in Europe and the Middle East since last month.

Reporting by Sybille de La Hamaide and Gus Trompiz