News for those who live, work and play in the Santiam Canyon

Avian Influenza detected in backyard flock

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) confirmed May 6 the presence of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in a non-commercial, backyard flock (non-poultry) in Linn County – the first confirmed case in Oregon since 2015. 

HPAI (H5N1) is a highly contagious virus that transmits easily among wild and domestic bird species. However, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the recent HPAI detection does not present an immediate public health concern.

“We knew HPAI was coming our way after a bald eagle in British Columbia tested positive in early March,” said Dr. Ryan Scholz, State Veterinarian, Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA). “Now more than ever, all bird owners must practice good biosecurity, prevent contact between their birds and wild birds and report sick birds or unusual deaths so ODA can ensure testing.”

The owner of the affected backyard flock reported the deaths and delivered at least one of the birds to Oregon State University’s Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory for initial sample testing. Samples were also sent to APHIS’s National Veterinary Services Laboratory. 

ODA quickly quarantined the affected premises. ODA humanely euthanized any additional birds on the property to prevent the spread of the disease. 

Birds from this farm were not used for food and will not enter the food system. There are no detections in commercial poultry in the state.

If you find a sick or dying bird, ODA asks that you do not touch it; report it. For domestic birds, report by calling ODA at 1-800-347-7028 or email [email protected]. For wild birds, please call and report to the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife by calling 1-866-968-2600.

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