Most Koreans are spending time with their loved ones on this Lunar New Years Day but thousands of government employees and quarantine officials as well as the military and police are working tirelessly to try and contain the spread of the bird flu.
Government officials are on duty at sterilization facilities at interchanges on highways, and at bus and train stations across the nation.
Two more chicken farms reported confirmed cases of the bird flu on Thursday, a disturbing sign that quarantine efforts may only be having a limited impact.
Tests came back positive from a chicken breeding farm in Hwasong, in the central province of Gyeonggi-do, and another in Miryang in Gyeongsangnam-do province, in the southeast of the country.
The confirmations prompted authorities in Gyeonggi-do province to cull all chickens within 3-kilometer radiuses of the affected farms.
In Gyeongsangnam-do province, approximately 90-thousand chickens will be destroyed, in a preventive effort to stop the virus spreading.
The contamination in Miryang is especially disturbing as it shows the virus is gradually spreading eastward across Korea.
This is also the first infection confirmed at poultry farms in Gyeonggi-do, a region that is home to the largest number of chicken farms in the country with over 55-million chickens.
As a new step to stem the spread of the virus, the government has banned all sales of live chickens and ducks at traditional markets until early next month.
Shin Se-min, Arirang News.
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