HPAI

Iowa asks USDA to compensate farmers for cows culled due to H5N1 virus

The federal government should compensate dairy farmers who send dairy cattle to slaughter because of the H5N1 avian flu virus, said Iowa state Agriculture Secretary Mike Naig, in announcing the second outbreak in the state. At least 90 herds in 12 states from Wyoming to North Carolina have been infected since bird flu was discovered in cattle in Texas in March.

Bird flu infects dairy herd in Iowa, 10th state to be hit

A dairy herd in northwestern Iowa is infected with the H5N1 avian flu virus, said state agriculture secretary Mike Naig on Wednesday. He called on dairy and poultry farmers to “harden their biosecurity defenses” against the virus.

Idaho alpacas are first in the world to be infected with bird flu

Four alpacas in a small Idaho herd were infected with the H5N1 bird flu virus —  the first known infection of alpacas in the world, said the Agriculture Department on Tuesday. The alpacas were on the same backyard farm that culled its poultry earlier this month due to an outbreak of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI).

CDC: Texas farmworker only person known to contract bird flu from cattle

At least 200 people have been monitored for possible exposure to the H5N1 bird flu virus and 30 people have been tested, but a dairy worker in Texas is the only person known to contract the disease from cattle, said the Centers for Disease Control. "No additional human cases have been detected" since bird flu was discovered for the first time in cattle six weeks ago.

H5N1 virus was undetected for months in dairy cattle, researchers say

Genetic testing indicates the H5N1 bird flu virus jumped from wild birds to dairy cattle in Texas approximately four months before it was identified in late March, said a nationwide team of researchers. “Continued transmission of H5N1 HPAI [highly pathogenic avian influenza] within dairy cattle increases the risk for infection and subsequent spread of the virus to human populations.”

USDA is testing ground beef for bird flu virus

Agriculture Department scientists are conducting three beef safety studies following the first-ever discovery of bird flu in dairy cows a month ago, said a USDA spokesperson on Monday. The studies include tests of ground beef purchased at grocery stores in states with infected herds.

Bird flu virus susceptible to antiviral meds used against seasonal flu, says CDC

Testing has confirmed that antiviral medications used against the seasonal flu would be effective against the H5N1 bird flu virus that also infects dairy cattle, said the Centers for Disease Control. The USDA said on Monday the virus has been confirmed in 33 dairy herds in eight states since it was first identified on March 25.

USDA assesses vaccine to protect cattle from bird flu virus

The Agriculture Department said its research agency “has begun to assess the potential to develop an effective vaccine” against the H5N1 bird flu virus in cattle, although it warned that it is too early to say how long the process would take. The virus has so far infected 29 dairy herds in eight states, though there have been no detections in commercial beef herds since the disease was identified in cattle in late March.

USDA: Test for bird flu before interstate transport of cattle

Michigan officials said the H5N1 bird flu virus has infected three additional dairy herds in the state, just as the USDA recommended farmers test their herds for the virus before moving cattle between states. The tests "should both give us more ... information and should mitigate further state-to-state spread between herds," said the USDA's animal health agency.

HPAI found in dairy cows in seventh state

The H5N1 bird flu virus has been found in a dairy herd in North Carolina, said state Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler on Wednesday, making it the seventh state in a little over two weeks to report infected cattle. “We have spent years developing ways to handle HPAI in poultry, but this is new, and we are working with our state and federal partners to develop protocols to handle this situation,” he said.

Bird flu infects two more dairy herds, says USDA

Dairy herds in Kansas and New Mexico are infected with the H5N1 bird flu virus, raising the U.S. total to 15 herds in six states, said the Agriculture Department on Thursday. Texas has the most infected herds, with seven, followed by Kansas with three and New Mexico with two.

CDC: Bird flu virus lacks changes to make it a greater threat to people

Samples of the H5N1 bird flu virus that has infected dairy cattle and a dairy worker retain avian genetic characteristics and “for the most part lack changes that would make them better able to infect mammals,” said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in a technical update. “The overall risk to human health associated with the ongoing HPAI A(H5) outbreaks in poultry and detections in wild birds and cattle remains low,” said the CDC.

USDA confirms bird flu in 12th dairy herd, is testing more

USDA scientists confirmed the bird flu virus in a dairy herd in Idaho on Tuesday — the 12th herd in five states — with Ohio appearing for the first time on the list of states with "presumptive positive" results that will be double-checked. Meanwhile, officials said a Texas egg farm suffered the largest U.S. outbreak of bird flu in four months.

First time: Bird flu spreads from cattle to human in Texas

A Texas patient tested positive for the bird flu virus after exposure to dairy cattle believed to be carrying the disease — the first known instance of cattle-to-human transmission in the United States, said public health officials on Monday. The patient reported eye redness, consistent with conjunctivitis, as the only symptom and was recovering, said the Centers for Disease Control.

Bird flu found in dairy herds in five states

Bird flu, which killed more than 82 million birds in U.S. domestic flocks in the past two years, has appeared in dairy herds in Idaho, Kansas, Michigan, New Mexico, and Texas, said federal officials. The outbreaks, affecting a relatively small number of cattle, are not expected to affect milk supply or prices at the grocery store.

Bird flu found in dairy cows in Texas and Kansas

The USDA announced Monday that unpasteurized milk samples from sick cattle at two dairy farms in Kansas and one in Texas, as well as an oropharyngeal swab from another dairy in Texas, tested positive for Highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI).

Nearly 80 million birds die in almost two years of bird flu

One-fourth of U.S. losses to bird flu in outbreaks that began in early 2022 were recorded in the past three months, when the viral disease staged a resurgence, according to USDA data released on Thursday. Some 20.9 million birds were culled in infected domestic flocks from October through December to prevent the spread of highly pathogenic avian influenza.

On his birthday, Biden lets freedom ring for two Thanksgiving turkeys

In an event that traditionally opens the holiday season in Washington, President Biden pardoned two Thanksgiving turkeys, briefly plugged his rural policies, and joked about his age — 81 — on Monday, his birthday. "I want you to know, it's difficult turning 60," he said, evoking laughter from a couple of hundred people on the South Lawn of the White House. "Difficult."

With new outbreaks, bird flu toll nears 59 million fowls

Ending a five-month hiatus, highly pathogenic avian influenza was confirmed in commercial flocks in two states — turkey farms in Utah and South Dakota — said the Agriculture Department. Some 58.97 million birds, mostly egg-laying chickens and turkeys being raised for human consumption, have died in bird flu outbreaks that began in February 2022.

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