Written by Harry Porter
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Topics: Britain, Bird Flu

Saturday, 29 October 2005

image for Britain Reaches for the Medicine Cabinet to Fight Avian Flu
A wise robin at a British garden bird-spa

The United Kingdom has put itself in the front line to combat the global threat of bird flu.

With a pandemic now predicted across the world, the British population is heeding Government advice and rallying around to fight the cause… not the symptoms.

Already bird baths across the country are being laced with doses of Night Nurse, Beechams All-in-One and other popular liquid, cold remedies.

Bird tables are being smeared with menthol and eucalyptus and old crusts of bread are being dipped in Vitamin C before being liberally scattered in back gardens and public parks.

This follows an announcement from the Department of Health that the simplest way to stop the bug mutating and transferring to the human population is to cure the planet's feathered friends as soon as they get a sniffle.

"Avian flu is a serious threat to mankind," said Professor Sefton Delmer, head of the communicable diseases unit at the Department of Health.

"The elderly, infirm, young, middle aged, smokers, drinkers, fitness fans, vegetarians, gays, drivers, Roman Catholics, television viewers and KFC addicts are the groups most at risk.

"We need to take action to protect these millions of ordinary citizens and the only way to do it is to relieve the flu symptoms being experienced by birds.

"Coughs and sneezes really do spread diseases and a single sneeze from a below-par sparrow could wipe out the residents in any neighbourhood.

"We have to make sure that sparrow is phlegm free."

Professor Delmer urged every citizen to play his or her part and selflessly clear out their medicine cabinets to help clear those blocked-up beaks.

However, he urged caution in utilising more traditional remedies and particularly warned against the use of the ‘hot toddy'.

This followed an incident in Castlebay on the Isle of Barra in the Hebrides.

There, a generous measure of the toddy - a mixture of whisky, lemon juice and honey - given to a flock of gannets led to the inebriated seabirds adopting an erratic flight path, thereby causing a motorcyclist to lose control of his bike.

Although the biker's injuries were minor, the local constabulary have warned that the outcome could have been much more serious.

The Department of Health has also revealed that seasonal favourite, the common robin, is least at risk, having been blessed with enough sense to wear a waistcoat over his feathers in the cold weather.

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The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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