This Avian Flu Hurts Eagles & Owls

Eleven Wisconsin counties are facing bird flu, and DATCP just released an order stopping the movement of birds to live shows, exhibits and swaps. Meanwhile, 26 counties in Wisconsin have seen wild bird mortalities as a result of the highly pathogenic avian influenza.

DNR Veterinarian Lindsey Long says predatory birds like eagles, hawks and owls are impacted by this particular strain, the same for waterfowl.

“We’ve collected 141 carcasses as of May 6th for testing, so those would be birds that were noted with clinical signs suspicious of the currently circulating HPAI,” Long tells Mid-West Farm Report. “Some results are still pending, but so far we’ve had 61 birds from 26 counties in which the H5 HPAI has been detected during this event.”

This is in stark contrast to the one bird flu mortality in a snowy owl recorded during the 2015 outbreak.

Luckily, sunshine kills the virus, and warm weather allows birds to disperse. This brings optimism to the avian flu epidemic Wisconsin is experiencing.

Long says the simplest thing you can do to prevent the spread of avian influenza between wild birds and your domestic flock is to take down bird feeders and designate one pair of shoes to do solely chores.