March 2, 2022

State officials: Bird flu found at 6th Indiana turkey farm

Stock Photo

Stock Photo

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Avian influenza has been detected in a sixth commercial poultry flock in southern Indiana, state officials said Tuesday.

Laboratory testing of a fourth commercial turkey flock in Dubois County has come back as presumptively positive for the virus, the Indiana State Board of Animal Health said. The samples are being verified at the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Veterinary Services Laboratory in Iowa.

Three previous cases were found in Dubois County and two in Greene County. Cases have also been detected in Michigan, in a backyard flock and in a zoo.

Pending test results should indicate if it is the same strain of the virus that has been found elsewhere and if it is highly pathogenic.

Officials have begun euthanizing the 16,500 birds at the latest farm to prevent the spread of the disease.

Animal Health Board staff have reached out to known hobby/backyard poultry owners in the area to schedule testing of birds there, it said.

The agency said avian influenza does not present an immediate public health concern and no human cases of avian influenza viruses have been detected in the U.S.

The turkey infections are the first confirmation of highly pathogenic bird flu in commercial poultry in the U.S. since 2020, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has said.

A January 2016 outbreak of bird flu in Dubois County affected 11 poultry farms, resulting in the loss of more than 400,000 birds, the Animal Health Board said.

Indiana ranks third nationally in turkey production.

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