Minnesota reports Avian Flu in Le Sueur County
LE SUEUR COUNTY, Minn. (KEYC) - Avian Influenza has been detected in Minnesota for the first time in four months.
The Board of Animal Health reported Monday that an outbreak of Avian Influenza was detected in Le Sueur County, the first report of the disease in Minnesota since December.
The outbreak was restricted to a backyard mixed flock, which was quarantined and destroyed to prevent the disease from spreading further.
This report comes shortly after Minnesota Senator Tina Smith, among three other senators, presented a bill to help aid farmers against Avian Influenza and other diseases, which hit the livestock industry hard late last year.
“It’s devastating for the producers whose flocks are infected and affected and they have to euthanize their entire flock,” said Minnesota Senator Tina Smith (D). “But [it] also can be devastating for a producer nearby whose animals are completely safe, but then they’ve lost access to their export markets.”
County officials say that once this type of outbreak is detected, the state of Minnesota euthanizes the flock and pays the farmer an indemnity for the living birds.
Officials say that while disease outbreaks are unfortunate, it’s an unavoidable part of the livestock industry.
“There’s not a real good way to predict where it’s going to pop up or not,” said Le Sueur County Commissioner, David Preisler. “But it is a virus, it’s going to survive longer in like, cool and damp conditions in the wild, so this sort of weather we’ve had lately is pretty conducive to that.”
The Board says that this outbreak was restricted to the single flock, and likely did not spread further.
They also stress that this instance is not a risk to spread to or harm humans.
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