Utah FDA confirms avian flu case in Utah County flock

Chickens. Photo: UFDA

UTAH COUNTY, April 23, 2022 (Gephardt Daily) — The highly pathogenic avian flu virus has been detected in a small, backyard flock of birds, the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food confirmed.

“Our state veterinarian’s office was notified of symptomatic birds in Utah County and our team was immediately dispatched to assess the situation,” said Dr. Dean Taylor, Utah state veterinarian in a prepared statement released Friday.

“Proper steps have been taken to prevent further spread of the disease.”

UDAF officials have worked closely with the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Inspection Service (APHIS) on their incident response, the statement says.

The statement does not specify what kind of birds were infected.

“The area in which the birds were located has been quarantined and the infected birds have been depopulated to prevent further spread of the disease.”

As part of existing avian influenza response plans, UDAF and its federal partners are working jointly on additional surveillance and testing in areas around the affected flock.

Anyone with birds located in Utah County please vigilantly watch your flock for symptoms of avian influenza (HPAI), which include 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, please contact the state veterinarian’s office immediately at [email protected].

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the recent HPAI detections do not present an immediate public health concern. No human cases of this strain of HPAI have been detected in the United States. As a reminder, the proper handling and cooking of all poultry and eggs to an internal temperature of 165 ˚F is recommended as a general food safety precaution.

Anyone involved with poultry production — from the small backyard to the large commercial producer — should review their biosecurity activities to assure the health of their birds. APHIS has materials about biosecurity, including videos, checklists, and a tool kit available at this website.

To view a map of the infected area, click hereFor more information from a nationwide perspective, click here.

This map shows the Utah area known to be affected by avian flu as of Friday, April 21, 2022. Image: UFDA map

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