The United States is experiencing the spread of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) in several states including Indiana, Kentucky, Virginia, Maine, Delaware, New York, and Michigan, who all have confirmed cases in both commercial and backyard flocks. No cases have been detected in Utah at this time, but state officials are monitoring the situation closely.
“This disease poses a threat to our poultry industry, backyard hobby flocks, and human health,” said Dr. Dean Taylor, State Veterinarian. “Care should be used in handling poultry or wildlife.”
Indicators of HPAI in avian flocks are incidents of high death loss among flocks, nasal discharge, decreased appetite or water consumption, and lack of coordination in birds. If birds are experiencing any of these symptoms, it should be reported to the State Veterinarian at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Avian influenza is frequently spread through migratory waterfowl, and these birds often do not show any symptoms. The most effective means to control this disease is to practice good biosecurity at both large commercial facilities and in-home flocks of poultry. Greater risk exists when waterfowl are in close proximity to domestic fowl.
For more information and guidance on how to protect animal and human health, visit USDA’s Defend the Flock website.