(DailyDig.com) – On October 4, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) confirmed that a commercial flock of poultry, including turkeys, numbering 47,300 in Jerauld County, SD, had been infected with the highly contagious avian flu. On October 6, it was also found in Sanpete County, Utah, at a poultry farm with 141,800 fowl. It makes people nervous about future epidemics happening all around the nation.
Until this past week, the only confirmed cases of bird flu in the United States had been isolated incidents involving wild birds or captive birds kept in small flocks. Over 185,000 birds have been affected by the recent outbreaks, necessitating their culling. To stop the propagation of bird flu, infected flocks are killed off.
The USDA estimates that last year’s bird flu outbreak killed almost 59 million fowl in 47 states. This number includes both egg-laying birds and poultry reared for slaughter. Over $660 million was lost by the government due to the outbreak, and consumer prices for turkey and eggs skyrocketed as a result.
The CDC has said that human cases of avian flu are very uncommon and thus do not pose a threat to the food supply. Even though viruses are killed by cooking chicken and turkey to an internal temperature of 165 degrees F, infected birds are still not permitted in the food supply.
U.S. Department of Agriculture authorities believe the current outbreak is related to the one that began in Europe and arrived in the United States in early 2022. Periodically, the United States has restricted poultry importation from Europe in an effort to contain the disease.
Producers are urged to take extra measures to improve biosecurity. Farmers have maintained strict biosecurity for many years, and at this point, there is nothing more they can do to protect their flocks from the virus.
The primary objective is to prevent wild bird feces from being brought into fowl barns on the clothes and shoes of farm employees. They also prevent waste from hitchhiking on things like dust, tractors, birds, and mice.
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