The first cases of low-path avian flu for this year appeared in Missouri. This happened after 20000 turkeys from a commercial flock got sick. The birds were in Jasper County, in a turkey farm. It was hard to discover the avian flu, as there were no symptoms or an increased death toll.
They managed to discover the virus in February, when they were doing some routing testings before slaughter. They also had surveillance for H5 and H7 avian flu. A report was filed last week by the U.S. Department of Agriculture with the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE).
Live poultry are more vulnerable during fall and spring, when wild bird migration takes place. The virus can infect birds via “ocular or nasal discharge or feces from infected birds”. It can also happen by contacting water, food or surfaces that have been contaminated.
With domestic birds, the risk is even higher, as H5 and H7 flu viruses are able to mutate from low path to high path after poultry is infected. Humans can’t get the virus via cooked eggs or poultry, but it does happen if there is close contact with the birds that are infected with the avian flu virus.
Investigations are going on
The turkey farm is now quarantined and the birds were taken away. Ontario’s Feather Board Command Centre explained that the process of “controlled marketing” will take place which means that which means that birds that were exposed to or infected with the viruses, are able to move to the market on a “limited basis”.
This case was definitely an alarming one and officials are currently investigating. They are currently surveilling and testing the area and they managed to find two other commercial poultry operations that have tested negative.