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Bird flu hits northwest Iowa turkey operation with 40,000 birds

Des Moines Register 12/6/2022 Donnelle Eller, Des Moines Register
A Buena Vista County turkey operation in northwest Iowa with 40,000 birds was the latest facility to be hit with highly pathogenic avian influenza, the Iowa Department of Agriculture reported Friday. © AP A Buena Vista County turkey operation in northwest Iowa with 40,000 birds was the latest facility to be hit with highly pathogenic avian influenza, the Iowa Department of Agriculture reported Friday.

Bird flu hit a Buena Vista County turkey operation with 40,000 birds, the fifth flock to be infected in the state since October, the Iowa Department of Agriculture said Friday.

Iowa, the nation's top egg producer and seventh-largest turkey producer, leads the nation in the number of birds destroyed to stop the spread of highly pathogenic avian influenza. So far, this year, 15.5 million chickens, turkeys and other birds have been lost across the state as a result of the deadly disease.

Migrating birds can carry the virus without showing apparent symptoms, spreading it to domestic flocks through their droppings. During the spring migration of wild birds, 19 Iowa backyard and commercial flocks were hit by the disease. Cases resumed in October with the fall migration.

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Last month, the Iowa Department of Agriculture canceled all live bird shows and exhibitions, swaps or auctions in an effort to prevent bird flu's spread. The state issued a similar order this spring, canceling live-bird events from March 23 to June 3.

The current strain of bird flu aren't a human health threat and none of the birds nor any poultry products from flocks where avian influenza is detected will reach U.S. food supplies, officials say. 

This article originally appeared on Des Moines Register: Bird flu hits northwest Iowa turkey operation with 40,000 birds

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