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PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2015 11:18 am 
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Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
Information received on 07/01/2015 from Dr John Clifford, Deputy Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, United States Department of Agriculture, Washington, United States of America
Summary
Report type Follow-up report No. 1
Date of start of the event 10/12/2014
Date of pre-confirmation of the event 15/12/2014
Report date 07/01/2015
Date submitted to OIE 07/01/2015
Reason for notification Reoccurrence of a listed disease
Date of previous occurrence 2004
Manifestation of disease Clinical disease
Causal agent Highly pathogenic avian influenza virus
Serotype H5N2
Nature of diagnosis Laboratory (advanced)
This event pertains to a defined zone within the country
Related reports Immediate notification (16/12/2014)
Follow-up report No. 1 (07/01/2015)
New outbreaks (1)
Outbreak 1 Benton County, Benton, WASHINGTON
Date of start of the outbreak 24/12/2014
Outbreak status Continuing (or date resolved not provided)
Epidemiological unit Backyard
Affected animals
Species Susceptible Cases Deaths Destroyed Slaughtered
Birds 178 37 37 141 0
Affected population The affected premises is a small backyard mixed free-range flock of geese, turkeys, chickens, ducks, and pigeons that are allowed access to the outdoors and regularly exposed to wild migratory waterfowl.
Summary of outbreaks Total outbreaks: 1
Total animals affected
Species Susceptible Cases Deaths Destroyed Slaughtered
Birds 178 37 37 141 0
Outbreak statistics
Species Apparent morbidity rate Apparent mortality rate Apparent case fatality rate Proportion susceptible animals lost*
Birds 20.79% 20.79% 100.00% 100.00%
*Removed from the susceptible population through death, destruction and/or slaughter
Epidemiology
Source of the outbreak(s) or origin of infection
Contact with wild species
Epidemiological comments The USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), in conjunction with State Departments of Agriculture and Wildlife, are continuing to conduct a comprehensive epidemiological investigation and enhanced surveillance in response to the HPAI H5N2 wild bird related event. The USDA APHIS National Veterinary Services Laboratory (NVSL) confirmed avian influenza virus (AIV) H5N2 in a backyard mixed flock. Preliminary results indicate that the H5N2 identified is 99% similar to the recent H5N2 isolated from the Northern pintail duck. Epidemiological investigation of backyard AIV infected premises as of 6 January 2015: • Two high risk epidemiologically linked contact backyard premises have been identified and placed under quarantine. Biological sampling for AIV has been completed and results are pending. • Enhanced surveillance in a 10 km radius has been implemented. The HPAI H5N2 virus has NOT been found in commercial poultry anywhere in the United States.
Control measures
Measures applied
Stamping out
Quarantine
Movement control inside the country
Vaccination prohibited
No treatment of affected animals
Measures to be applied
Disinfection of infected premises/establishment(s)
Diagnostic test results
Laboratory name and type Species Test Test date Result
National Veterinary Services Laboratory (NVSL) (National laboratory) Birds real-time reverse transcriptase/polymerase chain reaction (RRT-PCR) 03/01/2015 Positive
National Veterinary Services Laboratory (NVSL) (National laboratory) Birds virus isolation Pending
National Veterinary Services Laboratory (NVSL) (National laboratory) Birds virus sequencing 03/01/2015 Positive
Future Reporting
The event is continuing. Weekly follow-up reports will be submitted.

http://www.oie.int/wahis_2/public/wahid ... rtid=16914

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2015 1:53 pm 
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Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
Quarantine on eggs, poultry placed on Tri-Cities
BY KRISTI PIHL
Tri-City HeraldJanuary 7, 2015 Updated 2 hours ago
http://media.tri-cityherald.com/smedia/ ... St.13.jpeg

A veterinarian from the U.S. or state departments of agriculture uses a fishing net to capture birds infected or exposed to avian flu at a backyard farm in Richland earlier this week. BOB BRAWDY — Tri-City Herald |Buy Photo

Eggs, poultry and poultry products from domestic flocks can’t be moved out of much of the Tri-Cities because of an emergency quarantine declared to limit the spread of the highly contagious avian flu.

The Washington State Department of Agriculture quarantine took immediate effect Wednesday and covers about 20 miles near two Benton County locations where backyard flocks of chickens, turkeys, ducks and guinea fowl were found to have avian influenza.

Humans can’t catch the disease but it’s deadly to birds so officials are trying to keep it from spreading to other flocks. The quarantine likely will be in effect for about eight months.

It’s OK to buy eggs, chicken breasts and other poultry products from the grocery store and take it home. But you’re not allowed to get eggs and meat from someone else’s backyard flock.

Avian flu has been found in two Benton County backyard flocks in the past two weeks. And more than 700 birds have died or been euthanized.

This is the first time avian flu has been found in a backyard flock in Washington. No U.S. commercial flocks have been affected.

The commercial industry has a robust avian influenza testing program, say officials. Inspectors perform weekly testing and health inspections at live bird markets in the state.

Officials say the biggest risk is that migratory wild waterfowl could spread the disease to other backyard flocks.

The quarantine prevents Tri-Citians from transporting any chickens, turkeys, waterfowl, pigeons, doves and any other domestic fowl outside the area.

The prohibition also applies to pheasants, partridges, chukars, quail and grouse. Those birds all are considered potential hosts for avian influenza.

“The idea is to try to limit the chance of greater exposure to avian influenza,” said Hector Castro, the state Department of Agriculture’s communications manager.

Eggs and living and dead poultry on properties within the quarantine area are not supposed to be moved to other properties within the quarantine area, according to the emergency rule.

And any vehicles, equipment and clothing that comes into contact with poultry must be disinfected before leaving any property within the quarantine zone, according the the emergency rule. Items that can’t be disinfected can’t be transported.

The quarantine covers most of Richland, up to the border with the Hanford nuclear reservation, most of West Richland and the Badger Canyon area, according to state documents.

Kennewick west of Columbia Center Boulevard also is part of the quarantine area. The area extends south to Locust Grove Road and west over to about Clodius Road.

The quarantine also extends over the Columbia River to include Franklin County south of Birch Road and west of Taylor Flats Road.

Exemptions from the quarantine are possible, Castro said. Businesses that can show their establishments have strong biosecurity measures in place to protect the health of their birds can get special permission to move eggs, poultry or poultry products.

A Benton City flock was the first to have sick and dying birds in the region. The birds had access to a pond visited by wild waterfowl, which have been known to carry avian influenza.

About 100 ducks from a Richland flock had visited the Benton City flock, said officials.

The birds in both flocks that had not already died were euthanized by officials Monday and Tuesday as part of an effort to control the spread of the disease. Some of them were already getting sick. Poultry that catch the disease usually die within three days.

No new cases of avian influenza had been found by Wednesday afternoon. And the test results for another backyard flock living near the Benton City flock came back negative for avian influenza, Castro said.

The strain of influenza found in the Benton City birds — H5N2 — is the same as the one found earlier in a wild pintail duck in Whatcom County and in outbreaks in Canada.

Tests have confirmed that the Richland flock had avian influenza, Castro said. Officials are still waiting for the USDA to confirm the exact strain.

USDA officials will contact property owners within about six miles of both sites to check to see if any other domestic birds have been infected. Those birds would be tested with owner permission. From poultry, a swab is taken from the inside of its beak. With waterfowl, feces are tested.

State officials used the area the USDA plans to check as the basis for the quarantine.

For more details on how to get a special permit to move birds or eggs, go to it www.agr.wa.gov/lawsrules/rulemaking.

The map of the quarantine area and the emergency rule also are available there.

Kristi Pihl: 509-582-1512; kpihl@tricityherald.com; Twitter: @KristiAPihl

Read more here: http://www.tri-cityherald.com/2015/01/0 ... rylink=cpy

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 09, 2015 10:36 pm 
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Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
Published Date: 2015-01-09 19:47:40
Subject: PRO/AH/EDR> Avian influenza (01): USA (WA) backyard poultry, HPAI H5N2, OIE
Archive Number: 20150109.3082193
AVIAN INFLUENZA (01): USA (WASHINGTON) BACKYARD POULTRY, HPAI H5N2, OIE
***********************************************************************
A ProMED-mail post
http://www.promedmail.org
ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases
http://www.isid.org

Date: Wed 7 Jan 2015
Source: OIE, WAHID weekly disease information 2015; 28(02) [edited]
http://www.oie.int/wahis_2/public/wahid ... rtid=16914


Highly pathogenic avian influenza, USA
--------------------------------------
Information received on [and dated] 7 Jan 2015 from Dr John Clifford, deputy administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, United States Department of Agriculture, Washington, USA

Summary
Report type: follow-up report No. 1
Date of start of the event: 10 Dec 2014
Date of pre-confirmation of the event: 15 Dec 2014
Reason for notification: reoccurrence of a listed disease
Date of previous occurrence: 2004
Manifestation of disease: clinical disease
Causal agent: highly pathogenic avian influenza [HPAI] virus
Serotype: H5N2
Nature of diagnosis: laboratory (advanced)
This event pertains to a defined zone within the country

New outbreaks (1)
Summary of outbreaks: Total outbreaks: 1
Outbreak 1: Benton County, Benton, Washington
Date of start of the outbreak: 24 Dec 2014
Outbreak status: continuing (or date resolved not provided)
Epidemiological unit: backyard
Total animals affected:
Species / Susceptible / Cases / Deaths / Destroyed / Slaughtered
Birds / 178 / 37 / 37 / 141 / 0
Affected population: The affected premises is a small backyard mixed free-range flock of geese, turkeys, chickens, ducks, and pigeons that are allowed access to the outdoors and regularly exposed to wild migratory waterfowl.

Outbreak statistics [rates apparent, expressed as percentages]:
Species / Morbidity rate / Mortality rate / Case fatality rate / Proportion susceptible animals lost*
Birds / 20.79 / 20.79 / 100 / 100
*Removed from the susceptible population through death, destruction and/or slaughter

Epidemiology
Source of the outbreak(s) or origin of infection: contact with wild species
Epidemiological comment: The USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), in conjunction with State Departments of Agriculture and Wildlife, are continuing to conduct a comprehensive epidemiological investigation and enhanced surveillance in response to the HPAI H5N2 wild bird related event. The USDA APHIS National Veterinary Services Laboratory (NVSL) confirmed avian influenza virus (AIV) H5N2 in a backyard mixed flock. Preliminary results indicate that the H5N2 identified is 99 percent similar to the recent H5N2 isolated from the Northern pintail duck. Epidemiological investigation of backyard AIV infected premises as of 6 Jan 2015: 2 high risk epidemiologically linked contact backyard premises have been identified and placed under quarantine. Biological sampling for AIV has been completed and results are pending. Enhanced surveillance in a 10 km [6.2 mile] radius has been implemented. The HPAI H5N2 virus has NOT been found in commercial poultry anywhere in the United States.

Control measures
Measures applied: stamping out; quarantine; movement control inside the country; vaccination prohibited; no treatment of affected animals
Measures to be applied: disinfection of infected premises/establishment(s)

Diagnostic test results
Laboratory name and type: National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL) (national laboratory)
Species / Test / Test date / Result
Birds / real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RRT-PCR) / 3 Jan 2015 / Positive
Birds / virus sequencing / 3 Jan 2015 / Positive
Birds / virus isolation/ - / Pending

Future reporting
The event is continuing. Weekly follow-up reports will be submitted.

[The location of the outbreak can be seen on the interactive map included in the OIE report at the source URL above.]

--
Communicated by:
ProMED-mail
<promed@promedmail.org>

[The enhanced surveillance and increased awareness activities have allowed for the early detection of the virus, which has been limited to findings in wild birds and in small backyard flocks.

The event summaries and updated maps of these detections in the USA are available at http://www.oie.int/wahis_2/public/wahid ... rtid=16759 and http://www.oie.int/wahis_2/public/wahid ... rtid=16771.

H5N8 and H5N2 HPAI viruses have not been found in commercial poultry anywhere in the United States. - Mod.CRD

A HealthMap/ProMED-mail map can be accessed at: http://healthmap.org/promed/p/6387.]
See Also
2014
----
Avian influenza (115): USA (OR) backyard poultry, HPAI H5N8, OIE 20141222.3049031
Avian influenza (112): USA (WA) wild birds, HPAI H5N8, H5N2 20141218.3040607
Avian influenza (110): USA (WA) wild birds, HPAI H5N8, H5N2, OIE 20141217.3037995
Avian influenza (108): USA (WA) H5N2, H5N8, wild birds 20141217.3038018
Avian influenza (109): Canada (BC) HPAI H5N2, poultry 20141217.3038022
Avian influenza (107): Germany (NI) poultry, HPAI H5N8 20141216.3037531
Avian influenza (106): Italy (VN) poultry, HPAI H5N8, OIE 20141216.3036371
Avian influenza (104): Canada (BC) HPAI H5N2, poultry, update, OIE 20141210.3024271
Avian influenza (102): Canada (BC) HPAI H5N2, poultry 20141205.3012874
Avian influenza (101): Canada (BC) H5, poultry, RFI, OIE 20141204.3011429
Avian influenza (99): Netherlands (ZH) HPAI H5N8 conf, poultry 20141201.3003249
Avian influenza (98): Netherlands (ZH) H5, poultry 20141130.3000468
Avian influenza (97): HPAI H5N8, Germany, prevention, Japan, wild bird 20141128.2997318
Avian influenza (94): Netherlands (OV) HPAI H5N8, update, alert, OIE, FAO 20141124.2986950
Avian influenza (93): Germany, HPAI H5N8, migratory birds 20141122.2982721
Avian influenza (92): Netherlands (OV) HPAI H5N8, spread, RFI 20141121.2980599
Avian influenza (91): Netherlands (SH), UK (ENG) update, HPAI H5N8, RFI 20141120.2977844
Avian influenza (90): UK (England) domestic duck, HPAI H5N8, control 20141118.2966461
Avian influenza (89): UK (England) domestic duck, HPAI H5, OIE 20141117.2963406
Avian influenza (88): UK (England) domestic duck, H5, HPAI 20141117.2963428
Avian influenza (87): Netherlands (UT) poultry, HPAI H5N8, OIE 20141117.2961931
Avian influenza (86): UK (England) domestic duck, H5, RFI 20141117.2961879
Avian influenza (85): Netherlands (UT) poultry, HPAI H5N8 20141116.2960394
Avian influenza (83): Germany (MV) poultry, HPAI H5N8, migratory birds 20141115.2957974
Avian influenza (82): Japan (SM) HPAI H5N8, wild bird, OIE 20141115.2955318
Avian influenza (81): Germany (MV) poultry, HPAI H5N8, genotype 20141114.2955469
Avian influenza (80): Germany (MV) poultry, HPAI H5N8 20141113.2953243
Avian influenza (79): Germany (MV), poultry, HPAI H5N8, OIE 20141106.2934925
Avian influenza (78): China, poultry, HPAI H5N3, H5N8, H5N1, OIE 20141026.2898069
Avian influenza (74): South Korea (CN) HPAI H5N8, duck, reoccurrence, OIE 20140926.2804737
Avian influenza (70): S Korea, HPAI H5N8, over, RFI 20140905.2751562
Avian influenza (65): South Korea (CN) HPAI H5N8, RFI 20140730.2646054
Avian influenza (63): South Korea, HPAI H5N8, RFI 20140619.2552686
Avian influenza (58): Japan (KM) HPAI H5N8, controlled 20140504.2448688
Avian influenza (56): South Korea, HPAI H5N8, geese, OIE, RFI 20140502.2444300
Avian influenza (53): Japan (KM) HPAI H5N8, update 20140421.2419552
Avian influenza (52): Japan (KM) HPAI serotyped H5N8 20140417.2412249
Avian influenza (17): S. Korea, HPAI H5N8, poultry, spread, OIE, N. Korea, RFI 20140210.2268635
Avian influenza (15): South Korea, HPAI H5N8, poultry, wildfowl 20140203.2252563
Avian influenza (12): South Korea, HPAI H5N8, chicken, migratory birds, spread 20140129.2240988
Avian influenza (07): South Korea (CB) HPAI H5N8, duck, OIE 20140120.2185629
Avian influenza (06): South Korea (CB) HPAI H5N8, duck, migratory birds 20140120.2191161
Avian influenza (05): South Korea (CB) HPAI H5N8, duck 20140119.2183768
.................................................crd/je/dk

http://www.promedmail.org/direct.php?id=3082193

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 10, 2015 1:05 pm 
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Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
Published Date: 2015-01-10 10:54:11
Subject: PRO/AH/EDR> Avian influenza - USA (02): (WA) HPAI H5N2, backyard flock
Archive Number: 20150110.3083028
AVIAN INFLUENZA - USA (02): (WASHINGTON) HPAI H5N2, BACKYARD FLOCK
******************************************************************
A ProMED-mail post
http://www.promedmail.org
ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases
http://www.isid.org

Date: Wed 7 Jan 2015
Source: Tri-City Herald [edited]
http://www.tri-cityherald.com/2015/01/0 ... laced.html


Eggs, poultry, and poultry products from domestic flocks can't be moved out of much of the Tri-Cities [Kennewick, Pasco, and Richland in Washington state] because of an emergency quarantine declared to limit the spread of the highly contagious avian flu.

The Washington State Department of Agriculture quarantine took immediate effect [Wed 7 Jan 2015] and covers about 20 miles [32 km] near 2 Benton County locations where backyard flocks of chickens, turkeys, ducks, and guinea fowl were found to have avian influenza.

The strain of influenza found in the Benton City birds -- H5N2 -- is the same as the one found earlier in a wild pintail duck in Whatcom County and in outbreaks in Canada.

[To date there has been no evidence of HPAI H5N2- or H5N8-related illness in humans] but it is deadly to birds so officials are trying to keep it from spreading to other flocks. The quarantine could be in effect for up to 8 months.

It's OK to buy eggs, chicken breasts, and other poultry products from the grocery store and take them home. But you're not allowed to get eggs and meat from someone else's backyard flock.

Avian flu has been found in 2 Benton County backyard flocks in the past 2 weeks and more than 700 birds have died or been euthanized.

This is the 1st time avian flu has been found in a backyard flock in Washington. No US commercial flocks have been affected.

The commercial industry has a robust avian influenza testing program, say officials. Inspectors perform weekly testing and health inspections at live bird markets in the state.

Officials say the biggest risk is that migratory wild waterfowl could spread the disease to other backyard flocks. [Indeed this may be a risk and looking at the migration pattern of certain birds from other parts of the world, this may well be the case. There has always been some risk of domestic birds coming into contact with wild birds. After all, flu flies, whether in migratory birds or on planes full of passengers in the case of human strains. - Mod.TG]

The quarantine prevents Tri-Citians from transporting any chickens, turkeys, waterfowl, pigeons, doves, and any other domestic fowl outside the area.

The prohibition also applies to pheasants, partridges, chukars, quail, and grouse. Those birds all are considered potential hosts for avian influenza.

"The idea is to try to limit the chance of greater exposure to avian influenza," said Hector Castro, the state Department of Agriculture's communications manager.

Eggs and living and dead poultry on properties within the quarantine area are not supposed to be moved to other properties within the quarantine area, and any vehicles, equipment, and clothing that come into contact with poultry must be disinfected before leaving any property within the quarantine zone, according the emergency rule. Items that can't be disinfected can't be transported.

The quarantine covers most of Richland, up to the border with the Hanford nuclear reservation, most of West Richland, and the Badger Canyon area, according to state documents. Kennewick west of Columbia Center Boulevard also is part of the quarantine area. The area extends south to Locust Grove Road and west over to about Clodius Road. The quarantine also extends over the Columbia River to include Franklin County south of Birch Road and west of Taylor Flats Road.

Exemptions from the quarantine are possible, Castro said. Businesses that can show their establishments have strong biosecurity measures in place to protect the health of their birds can get special permission to move eggs, poultry or poultry products.

A Benton City flock was the first to have sick and dying birds in the region. The birds had access to a pond visited by wild waterfowl, which have been known to carry avian influenza.

About 100 ducks from a Richland flock had visited the Benton City flock, said officials.

The birds in both flocks that had not already died were euthanized by officials Monday and Tuesday [5-6 Jan 2015] as part of an effort to control the spread of the disease. Some of them were already getting sick. Poultry that catch the disease usually die within 3 days.

No new cases of avian influenza had been found by Wednesday afternoon [7 Jan 2015] and the test results for another backyard flock living near the Benton City flock came back negative for avian influenza, Castro said.

Tests have confirmed that the Richland flock had avian influenza, Castro said. Officials are still waiting for the USDA to confirm the exact strain.

USDA officials will contact property owners within about 6 miles [about 10 km] of both sites to check to see if any other domestic birds have been infected. Those birds would be tested with owner permission. From poultry, a swab is taken from the inside of its beak. With waterfowl, feces are tested.

State officials used the area the USDA plans to check as the basis for the quarantine.

For more details on how to get a special permit to move birds or eggs, go to http://www.agr.wa.gov/lawsrules/rulemaking.

A map of the quarantine area and the emergency rule also are available there.

[Byline: Kristi Pihl]

--
Communicated by:
ProMED-mail
<promed@promedmail.org>

[While the strain is listed as being H5N2 the article further states they are waiting on confirmation of this. Washington has had 2 different strains of HPAI recently but according to the OIE recent posting on ProMED-mail 20150109.3082193, it has been confirmed as H5N2.

The state of Washington can be located on the HealthMap/ProMED-mail interactive map at http://healthmap.org/promed/p/43568. A county map can be seen at http://geology.com/county-map/washington-county-map.gif. - Mod.TG]
See Also
Avian influenza (01): USA (WA) backyard poultry, HPAI H5N2, OIE 20150109.3082193
2014
----
Avian influenza (112): USA (WA) wild birds, HPAI H5N8, H5N2 20141218.3040607
Avian influenza (110): USA (WA) wild birds, HPAI H5N8, H5N2, OIE 20141217.3037995
Avian influenza (108): USA (WA) H5N2, H5N8, wild birds 20141217.3038018
Avian influenza (68): USA (NJ) poultry, LPAI, H7, OIE 20140829.2731960
Avian influenza (55): USA (CA) poultry, LPAI, H5 20140425.2428504
Avian influenza (54): USA (CA) poultry, LPAI, H5, OIE 20140423.2424661
2013
----
Avian influenza (71): USA (AR) poultry, LPAI H7N7 20130620.1782674
Avian influenza (04): USA (NY) H5 LPAI, poultry, RFI for N-type 20130115.1498109
2012
----
Avian influenza (13): USA (MA) LPAI, swan 20120208.1036521
Avian influenza (08): USA (MA) LPAI, swan 20120203.1031447
2004
----
Avian influenza, H7, poultry - USA (DE, MD) 20040412.0993
Avian influenza, poultry, H7 - USA (MD) (02) 20040309.0665
Avian Influenza, poultry, H7 - USA (MD) 20040308.0657
.................................................sb/tg/mj/dk

http://promedmail.org/direct.php?id=20150110.3083028

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2015 5:20 pm 
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Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
Avian flu outbreak in Tri-Cities prompts warning
The Associated Press
January 14, 2015 Updated 4 hours ago

SPOKANE, WASH. — Backyard poultry producers in Washington are being told by state officials to monitor their flocks after a deadly avian flu outbreak in the Tri-Cities area.

About 700 chickens, turkeys, ducks and guinea fowl in two backyard flocks were affected by the outbreak earlier this month.

The Spokesman-Review (http://bit.ly/1u6Cpus) reported Wednesday that some of the birds died from the fast-acting H5N2 avian influenza, which poses little risk to people. The remaining birds were destroyed to prevent the disease's spread.

Contact with the feces of infected wild ducks is believed to have caused the outbreak.

"These avian influenzas are often lethal," said Dorothy MacEachern, the Spokane Regional Health District's epidemiologist. "They can easily be transmitted, particularly in free-ranging backyard flocks that aren't protected from contact with wild birds."

Scientists are trying to determine whether the Tri-Cities outbreak was caused by the same H5N2 virus responsible for a December outbreak in southwest British Columbia that led to nearly 250,000 chickens and turkeys being destroyed.

"Although it's the same strain, we won't know if it's the same virus without genetic testing," said Hector Castro, a spokesman for the Washington Department of Agriculture.

Last week, federal researchers worked with hunters at the McNary National Wildlife Refuge east of the Tri-Cities to test ducks and geese for avian flu. Samples were taken from about 100 birds shot by hunters at the 15,000-acre refuge on the confluence of the Columbia and Snake rivers.

Earlier testing of wild birds had focused on Western Washington, after a northern pintail duck in Whatcom County tested positive for H5N2 avian influenza in December. The H5N2 strain contains gene segments both from a deadly Eurasian avian flu and from avian flu more typically found in North America.

The detection in the pintail duck was the first time the H5N2 strain had been discovered in Washington, and the Tri-Cities outbreak was the first detection in the state's domestic poultry, Castro said.

The state Department of Agriculture has ordered a quarantine of at least 240 days for a 20-mile zone around the Tri-Cities properties with the infected flocks. The quarantine prohibits the movement of eggs, poultry and other poultry products outside the zone.

A joint team of state and federal technicians worked to disinfect the two properties last week. Castro said that generally involves deep-cleaning equipment, but it can also require taking down outbuildings.

The Canadian government last week banned imports of birds, raw poultry and poultry products from Washington and Oregon. China has also banned all U.S. poultry, eggs and poultry products.

Officials said there is no immediate public health threat. Avian flu does not affect meat or eggs, which are safe to eat.

But concerns remain about wild birds spreading the virus. Given the popularity of backyard chickens, the recent outbreak is something that small producers and hobby farmers should be aware of, Castro said.

Information from: The Spokesman-Review, http://www.spokesman.com

Read more here: http://www.sunherald.com/2015/01/14/601 ... rylink=cpy

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2015 5:32 pm 
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Posts: 56044
Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
January 14, 2015 in City
Inland Northwest poultry producers urged to watch flocks for flu
Becky Kramer The Spokesman-Review
Image
A group of Rhode Island reds seem reluctant to venture onto the snowy ground from the Parrish family’s chicken coop on Sunday at their home in the Wandermere area. The Parrishes keep several chickens in their backyard to produce eggs.
(Full-size photo)(All photos)
State officials are urging backyard poultry producers to keep an eye on their flocks after a deadly avian influenza outbreak in the Tri-Cities area.

About 700 chickens, turkeys, ducks and guinea fowl in two backyard flocks were affected by the outbreak earlier this month. Some of the birds died from the fast-acting H5N2 avian influenza, which poses little risk to people but is highly contagious to domestic poultry. The remaining birds were destroyed to prevent the disease’s spread.

Contact with infected wild ducks is believed to have caused the outbreak.

“These avian influenzas are often lethal,” said Dorothy MacEachern, the Spokane Regional Health District’s epidemiologist. “They can easily be transmitted, particularly in free-ranging backyard flocks that aren’t protected from contact with wild birds.”

Scientists are trying to determine whether the Tri-Cities outbreak was caused by the same H5N2 virus responsible for a December outbreak in southwest British Columbia that led to nearly 250,000 chickens and turkeys being destroyed.

“Although it’s the same strain, we won’t know if it’s the same virus without genetic testing,” said Hector Castro, a spokesman for the Washington Department of Agriculture.

Within two days, avian flu had killed 50 to 60 birds in a large backyard flock in Benton County. A second backyard flock received ducks from the first operation before the infection was discovered, spreading the virus.

The disease is transmitted through contact with feces from infected birds.

“Waterfowl can be carriers and not get sick themselves,” Castro said. “Our concern is that this is one of the ways the virus is moving.”

Last week, federal researchers worked with hunters at the McNary National Wildlife Refuge east of the Tri-Cities to test ducks and geese for avian flu. Samples were taken from about 100 birds shot by hunters at the 15,000-acre refuge on the confluence of the Columbia and Snake rivers. It’s a major resting and feeding area for waterfowl migrating on the Pacific Flyway.

“We’re looking for unusual strains of avian influenza,” said Barb Bodenstein, a wildlife disease specialist with the U.S. Geological Survey, which sent the samples to a federal laboratory in Wisconsin for analysis.

Earlier testing of wild birds had focused on Western Washington, after a northern pintail duck in Whatcom County tested positive for H5N2 avian influenza in December. The H5N2 strain contains gene segments both from a deadly Eurasian avian flu and avian flu more typically found in North America.

The detection in the pintail duck was the first time the H5N2 strain had been discovered in Washington, and the Tri-Cities outbreak was the first detection in the state’s domestic poultry, Castro said.

The state Department of Agriculture acted quickly, ordering a quarantine of at least 240 days for a 20-mile zone around the Tri-Cities properties with the infected flocks. The quarantine prohibits the movement of eggs, poultry and other poultry products outside the zone.

Additional testing of domestic flocks will be conducted in that area. Meanwhile, a joint team of state and federal technicians worked to disinfect the two properties last week. Castro said that generally involves deep-cleaning equipment, but can also require taking down outbuildings.

The Canadian government also acted last week, banning imports of birds, raw poultry and poultry products from Washington and Oregon. In addition to the Tri-Cities outbreak, a different avian flu virus was discovered last month in a backyard flock in southern Oregon.

Officials said there is no immediate public health threat. Avian flu does not affect meat or eggs, which are safe to eat.

But concerns remain about wild birds spreading the virus. Given the popularity of backyard chickens, the recent outbreak is something that small producers and hobby farmers should be aware of, Castro said.

“People who have those birds really need to study up on the best practices for biosecurity. They need to make sure if there’s disease, they’re not spreading it to other flocks,” he said.

Besides preventing wild birds from having contact with their flocks, the Department of Agriculture recommends that poultry owners limit visits by outsiders to their chicken coops, or use a disinfectant on visitors’ boots, to reduce the risk of spreading infection.

Several poultry producers contacted by The Spokesman-Review said those measures are part of routine practices they undertake.

Tourmaline Farms in Deary, Idaho, sells chickens, eggs, dairy products and meat directly to consumers and several restaurants. The farm schedules tours so that customers can see its holistic management practices, said Pam Holloway, one of the owners. A “boot bath” is used to prevent the spread of disease, and the chickens’ diet is designed to boost their immune system, she said.

“Am I concerned about avian flu? Not really,” Holloway said last week. “We got hit with about 1 1/2 feet of snow during this outbreak, so my girls self-quarantined.”

The hens prefer their roomy indoor quarters this time of year, she said.

Susan and Paul Puhek are co-owners of S&P Homestead Farm in Otis Orchards. The couple gives talks on raising backyard chickens. Poultry health is one of the topics they emphasize.

In addition to vigilance by chicken owners in preventing and detecting disease, Susan Puhek would like to see local veterinarians develop a familiarity, or even specialty, in poultry.

“We raise chickens for the sale of eggs. It’s part of our living,” Puhek said. “When you’re selling eggs for $4.50 to $5 per dozen, there is a lot of money tied up in your laying hens.”

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2015 5:47 pm 
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Backyard Tri-City poultry, waterfowl checked for avian flu

POSTED ON JANUARY 13, 2015

Kristi Pihl
Tri-City Herald


KENNEWICK — Veterinarians from the federal and state Departments of Agriculture demonstrated Monday in Kennewick how testing samples are taken from backyard poultry and waterfowl.

Veterinarians have started visiting properties within about 2 miles of where two Benton County flocks were found to have a highly contagious and deadly form of avian influenza. State officials have identified the “highly pathogenic” form as HPAI H5N2 and say there are no apparent risks to human health.

Another strain, avian influenza A, which has not been identified in the birds, can infect humans in rare cases, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The chickens, turkeys, ducks, guinea fowl and other birds belonging to a Benton City backyard flock and a Richland flock were recently euthanized in an effort to control the spread of disease.

More than 700 birds from the two flocks — which had direct contact with each other — died earlier this month.

It’s likely the Benton City flock contracted avian influenza from migrating wild waterfowl, which are known carriers of the disease. The flock had access to a pond that also was used by wild waterfowl. Avian influenza can be spread through direct contact with the birds and their feces.

Part of the reason the state Department of Agriculture imposed a quarantine in the Tri-Cities was to reassure export markets that federal and state regulators are taking the necessary precautions so that avian flu does not spread.

Avian flu has not been detected in any U.S. commercial flock.

Contact the state Department of Agriculture immediately if you notice any unusual illnesses or death. Typical symptoms include respiratory issues, coughing or sneezing, lower egg production, decreased appetite and swelling on combs or waddles.

Deaths or illnesses in domestic birds should be reported to the WSDA Avian Health Program at 800-606-3056. For wild birds, call the state Department of Fish and Wildlife at 800-606-8768.

For more information about the quarantine, go to www.agr.wa.gov/lawsrules/rulemaking.
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 15, 2015 5:24 pm 
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Samples from Benton County flocks come back negative for avian flu
Email Print Comments Share Tweet POSTED ON JANUARY 15, 2015

Tri-City Herald


No new cases of avian flu have been detected in backyard poultry and waterfowl in Benton County.

Veterinarians and technicians from the U.S. and Washington state departments of agriculture have visited nearly 730 properties near the homes of the Richland and Benton City flocks that were diagnosed with avian influenza.

Samples have been taken from birds at 66 different properties. So far, all of the samples submitted have been negative for avian influenza.

The tests are part of precautionary measures taken by the state and federal departments to make sure the highly contagious and deadly form of avian influenza has been contained. This form of avian flu is not contagious to humans.

Chickens, turkeys, ducks, guinea fowl and other birds belonging to a Benton City backyard flock and a Richland flock were euthanized last week to control the spread of disease. More than 700 birds from the two flocks — which had direct contact with each other — died in the last few weeks.

It’s likely the Benton City flock contracted avian influenza from migrating wild waterfowl, which are known carriers of the disease.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 27, 2015 8:55 pm 
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For immediate release: Jan. 27, 2015 (15-05) Contact: Hector Castro (360) 902-1815



Avian flu quarantine lifted in Benton, Franklin counties

OLYMPIA – The Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) today lifted a quarantine that had been in place in parts of Benton and Franklin counties, 21 days after an emergency rule was adopted to enact the quarantine and restrict the movement of eggs, poultry or poultry products in the zone.
WSDA has determined that the avian influenza detected in the two Benton County backyard flocks in December does not appear to have spread beyond those two sites. To reach this conclusion, a team of veterinarians with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and WSDA visited approximately 1,800 premises in the quarantine area and tested samples from birds at more than 70 locations. All samples tested negative for avian influenza.
As a result of this action and lifting of the quarantine, there are no longer restrictions on the movement of poultry or poultry products within the areas of Benton or Franklin counties.
Such restrictions remain in place in parts of Clallam County, were a second quarantine was established after a flock was confirmed infected with the H5N2 avian influenza virus on Jan. 16, 2015. Visit www.agr.wa.gov/LawsRules/Rulemaking for the complete rule and a map of the Clallam County quarantine zone.
None of the viruses detected in Washington have been associated with human illnesses and there is no immediate public health concern. However, public health officials have contacted owners of identified infected flocks as a precaution.
The virus has not been detected in any commercial poultry operations in Washington. The state’s commercial poultry industry has a robust avian influenza testing program and WSDA conducts weekly surveillance testing and health inspections at live bird markets in the state.
Although the quarantine has been lifted, the risk of exposure to avian influenza still remains. Because migratory wild waterfowl populations can carry the disease, particularly the highly-pathogenic strains of avian influenza, WSDA urges bird owners to protect their domestic birds from contact with wild waterfowl and remain vigilant in their biosecurity measures.
Avian influenza does not affect poultry meat or egg products, which remain safe to eat. As always, both wild and domestic poultry should be properly cooked.
Deaths or illness among domestic birds should be reported to the WSDA Avian Health Program at 1-800-606-3056. For wild birds, contact the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife at 1-800-606-8768.
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