WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 7, 2015) — The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has confirmed the presence of highly pathogenic H5N2 avian influenza (HPAI) in a second commercial turkey flock in Kandiyohi County, Minnesota.
This is the eighth confirmation in a commercial flock in Minnesota. The flock of 30,000 turkeys is located within the Mississippi flyway where this strain of avian influenza has previously been identified. CDC considers the risk to people from these HPAI H5 infections in wild birds, backyard flocks and commercial poultry, to be low. No human infections with the virus have been detected at this time.
Samples from the turkey flock, which experienced increased mortality, were tested at the University of Minnesota Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory and the APHIS National Veterinary Services Laboratories in Ames, Iowa confirmed the findings. NVSL is the only internationally recognized AI reference laboratory in the United States.
APHIS is working closely with the Minnesota Board of Animal Health on a joint incident response. State officials quarantined the premises and birds on the property will be depopulated to prevent the spread of the disease. Birds from the flock will not enter the food system.
These virus strains can travel in wild birds without them appearing sick. People should avoid contact with sick/dead poultry or wildlife. If contact occurs, wash your hands with soap and water and change clothing before having any contact with healthy domestic poultry and birds.
All bird owners, whether commercial producers or backyard enthusiasts, should continue to practice good biosecurity, prevent contact between their birds and wild birds, and report sick birds or unusual bird deaths to State/Federal officials, either through their state veterinarian or through USDA’s toll-free number at 1-866-536-7593. Additional information on biosecurity for backyard flocks can be found at http://healthybirds.aphis.usda.gov.
Please view the USDA stakeholder announcements for information on detections of HPAI in Minnesota and the United States.
Visit www.mnairesponse.info for the most up-to-date information on Minnesota’s response to HPAI.