USDA’s APHIS has announced 8 more turkey farms in Minnesota have been struck by the highly pathogenic H5N2 virus, bringing to 22 the number of farms affected, spread across 12 counties. Newly added counties in today’s announcement include Redwood, La Sueur, and Swift (2 farms).
Today’s report pushes the number of Minnesota turkeys either killed, or to be culled, due to the H5N2 virus to roughly 1.4 million birds.
While migratory birds are being eyed as spreading the virus, how it is making it into so many farms - despite enhanced biosecurity measures - remains unanswered.
Published: Apr 14, 2015
WASHINGTON, April 14, 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 an additional eight commercial turkey flocks in Minnesota. There are 22 total confirmed cases in Minnesota. These flocks are 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.
The affected flocks are in:
- Kandiyohi County – 30,000 turkeys (4th detection in the county)
- La Sueur County – 21,500 turkeys (1st detection in the county)
- Meeker County – 25,000 turkeys (2nd detection in the county)
- Meeker County – 20,000 turkeys (3rd detection in the county)
- Stearns County – 76,000 turkeys (5th detection in the county)
- Swift County – 160,000 turkeys (1st detection in the county)
- Swift County – 154,000 turkeys (2nd detection in the county)
- Redwood County – 56,000 turkeys (1st detection in the county)
Samples from the turkey flocks were tested at the University of Minnesota Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory and the APHIS National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL) 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.