Notifiable avian influenza (NAI) had never been reported in Spain, until July 2006 when a dead Great Crested Grebe (Podiceps cristatus) was found positive to the highly pathogenic H5N1 subtype as part of the active wild bird surveillance plan. The current program of the Spanish Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Food (MAPA)'s strategic preventive plan against NAI is divided in the following parts: identification of risk areas and risk wild bird species, increased biosecurity measures, early detection of infection with surveillance intensification and development of rapid diagnostic tests, and other policies, which include continuing education and training to ensure early detection of the disease. In 2003 an active surveillance plan was introduced for domestic fowl; the plan was extended to wild birds in 2004. A total of 18,780 samples in poultry and 3687 samples in wild birds had been analyzed through December 2005 to detect the presence and spread of avian influenza subtypes H5 and H7.
In the present work we suggest some contributions to be implemented in MAPA's action plan: 1) the identification of risks because of migratory birds, within the risk assessment of the introduction of NAI virus in Spain and 2) an interactive digital simulator of the disease developed for continuing education and training.