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USDA Confirms More H5N2 in Iowa and South Dakota
South Dakota Ag Connection - 05/15/2015

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has confirmed the presence of highly pathogenic H5N2 avian influenza (HPAI) in additional four flocks in Iowa and South Dakota. No human infections with the virus have been detected at this time. CDC considers the risk to people from these HPAI H5 infections in wild birds, backyard flocks and commercial poultry, to be low.

USDA's National Veterinary Services Laboratories confirmed HPAI H5N2 in the following counties and states:

-- Cherokee County, Iowa -- 45,000 turkeys; 3rd detection in this county

-- Buena Vista County, Iowa -- Turkeys (number pending); 15th detection in this county

-- Hutchinson County, S.D. -- 70,000 turkeys

-- Yankton County, S.D. -- 70, 600 turkeys

Earlier Thursday, the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship reported it is responding to two probable cases of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in Sioux and Plymouth counties. With these two new announcements, Iowa now has 52 cases of the disease in the state. The Department has quarantined the premises and once the presence of the disease is confirmed, all birds on the property will be humanely euthanized to prevent the spread of the disease.

Sioux 12 -- A pullet farm that has experienced increased mortality. An estimate on the number of birds at the site is still pending. Initial testing showed it positive for H5 avian influenza. Additional confirmatory testing is pending from the APHIS National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL) in Ames.

Plymouth 1 -- A pullet farm that has experienced increased mortality. An estimate on the number of birds at the site is still pending. Initial testing showed it positive for H5 avian influenza. Additional confirmatory testing is pending from the APHIS National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL) in Ames.

The USDA reported that the affected premises in Iowa and South Dakota have been quarantined and birds on the properties will be depopulated to prevent the spread of the disease. Birds from the flock will not enter the food system.

According to USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service, in 2014, the U.S. poultry industry produced 8.54 billion broiler chickens, 99.8 billion eggs, and 238 million turkeys.

The United States has the strongest AI surveillance program in the world. As part of the existing USDA avian influenza response plans, Federal and State partners as well as industry are responding quickly and decisively to these outbreaks by following these five basic steps: 1) Quarantine -- restricting movement of poultry and poultry-moving equipment into and out of the control area; 2) Eradicate -- humanely euthanizing the affected flock(s); 3) Monitor region -- testing wild and domestic birds in a broad area around the quarantine area; 4) Disinfect -- kills the virus in the affected flock locations; and 5) Test -- confirming that the poultry farm is AI virus-free. USDA also is working with its partners to actively look and test for the disease in commercial poultry operations, live bird markets and in migratory wild bird populations.

For more information about the ongoing avian influenza disease incidents visit the APHIS website. More information about avian influenza can be found on the USDA avian influenza page. More information about avian influenza and public health is available on the CDC website.

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