Robert Roos | News Editor | CIDRAP News | May 12, 2015
Nebraska today joined the list of Midwestern states battling the H5N2 avian flu virus, with an outbreak on a large layer chicken farm, while neighboring Iowa reported four more avian flu outbreaks on chicken and turkey farms.
The virus has struck a farm housing 1.7 million layer chickens in Dixon County in northeastern Nebraska, northwest of Sioux City, Iowa, the US Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) announced today. The area is not far from several northwestern Iowa counties that have been battling H5N2.
APHIS said increased deaths in the chicken flock prompted initial testing by the South Dakota State University Animal Disease Research & Diagnostic Laboratory and confirmatory testing by the APHIS National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL) in Ames, Iowa. As in other outbreaks, officials quarantined the farm and made plans to destroy the surviving chickens as a precaution.
At the Nebraska Department of Agriculture (NDA), Director Greg Ibach said in a statement, “Unfortunately, Nebraska has joined a long list of states currently dealing with highly pathogenic avian influenza. We are working closely with our counterparts at USDA APHIS, as well as all of our Nebraska state agency partners to ensure we are following proper protocols to address this situation. The goal is to quarantine the flock and attempt to control and contain the virus as quickly as possible.”
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