Union County Oregon Flock Catches Bird Flu
On October 19, 2023, the Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal Plant Health Inspection Service (USDA APHIS) confirmed the first detection of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in a non-commercial flock in Union County. The affected flock included approximately 100 chickens.
Because the flock owners sell poultry products to the public, the World Organization for Animal Health (WOAH) classifies the birds as a poultry flock rather than a backyard flock. Federal and international disease control regulations require the state veterinarian to issue a regional quarantine for all HPAI detections in flocks defined by WOAH as “poultry”. The purpose of the quarantine is to prevent the movement of poultry and poultry products from within the affected area giving state and federal officials time to conduct surveillance to ensure no additional cases of HPAI exist.
The quarantine encompasses much of the area between the communities of Looking Glass, Gulling, and Minam in Northeastern Oregon. For your convenience, ODA provides an online map of the quarantined areas in Oregon. People may also enter their address using the online tool to determine whether their property is included in the quarantine area. ODA will lift the quarantine as regional surveillance is completed.
All of the birds from the affected flock are deceased and did not enter the food system. There is no immediate public health concern due to the avian influenza virus detection. Avian influenza does not affect poultry meat or egg products, which remain safe to eat. As always, both wild and domestic poultry should be adequately prepared and cooked.
ODA advises commercial poultry farmers and backyard flock owners to be vigilant with biosecurity measures and surveillance. Reducing or eliminating contact between wild birds and domestic flocks is the best way to protect domestic birds from this disease.
Death or illness among domestic birds should be immediately reported to ODA. Please report by calling 503-986-4711 (Alt Phone: 1-800-347-7028).
Please contact the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) for wild birds. Do not collect or handle the birds but report the incident directly to ODFW at 866-968-2600 or Wildlife.Health@odfw.oregon.gov.
For more tips on protecting your flock, please visit the ODA online at Avian Influenza.
Source: Oregon Department of Agriculture