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History, Politics & Society
Conditions and Diseases
Cold and Flu
Infectious Diseases

Where did influenza start?

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October 31, 2012 11:15PM

If you mean where did it originate, nobody knows. It's caused by a fast-mutating virus and was probably infecting people and animals a long time before it became virulent enough to cause alarm.

Each new year's "flu" starts with millions of Chinese pigs, which incubate it. The pigs pass the virus to ducks (Chinese eat both pork and poultry) Tame ducks pass it to wild ducks and they spread it around the world. People also incubate and infect, so it wouldn't extinquish the flu to kill all the pigs and ducks, even if that could be done.