Avian Flu Confirmed in Alaska
May 02, 2022
“With this confirmed case, it’s clear that migrating birds have brought avian influenza to Alaska this spring,” said Dr. Robert Gerlach, Alaska State Veterinarian. “We are relying on flock owners to keep an eye on their animals for signs of illness, and to report any possible cases of avian influenza promptly to their own veterinarian or to our office.”
Flock owners should be concerned if they observe sudden death of multiple birds in the flock, nasal discharge, sneezing, and coughing, or respiratory distress. Other signs include a significant drop in water consumption, diarrhea, lethargy, abnormal behavior or difficulty walking, blue discoloration of the comb and wattles or a swollen comb, wattles, legs, or head.
The risk to human health from this HPAI virus is very low, but it is highly contagious among birds and can affect all types of domestic poultry. Flock owners should take precautionary measures to protect their animals such as preventing contact with wild birds and ensuring the virus isn’t transmitted between domestic flocks on shoes, clothing, or tools. More information can be found on DEC’s avian influenza fact sheet.
Alaskans can report suspected avian influenza cases in their own animals or wild birds to Dr. Gerlach at 907-375-8215 or email@example.com.
Edited By: Mary Kauffman, SitNews