Turkey farm in California struck by bird flu
The World Organization for Animal Health reports that bird flu has struck a third commercial poultry farm in Central California. Some 61,000 turkeys in Merced County were infected by low pathogenic H7N3 virus, a North American strain of bird flu.
A tom turkey flock exhibited coughing and a an increase in mortality. Tests confirmed bird flu was the culprit. At 10 associated farms no bird flu was detected. A total of seven US commercial poultry farms have been infected with bird flu in 2015 so far, a total number of 430.800 birds are involved.
Bird flu was first detected in the United States in a northern pintail duck collected in Whatcom County in Washington state in mid-December. Since then, the virus has been found in varying strains in dozens of wild birds in six Western states and in non-commercial flocks in Washington, Oregon and Idaho.
Highly pathogenic H5N2
Bird flu was confirmed for the first time in the Central Flyway on March 13. A backyard flock of mixed poultry in Leavenworth, Kansas, was infected with highly pathogenic H5N2, according to the USDA.
Oregon, Washington and Idaho experienced a series of bird flu outbreaks in December, January and February, but none since mid-February. The Oregon Department of Agriculture on March 12 lifted restrictions and removed a quarantine in Deschutes County, where highly pathogenic avian influenza infected a backyard flock near Tumalo.
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