Malheur County in eastern Oregon is the latest county to see a bird quarantine as a result of the highly pathogenic avian influenza outbreak that has been spreading throughout the Pacific Northwest.
Fairs throughout the region all fall within that timeframe, meaning a local 4-H group that exclusively raises poultry and rabbits likely won't be able to show birds at the upcoming Malheur County Fair, the newspaper reported.
A quarantine was established recently in Lane County, Ore., after several Canada goose goslings collected from Alton Baker Park in Eugene tested positive for HPAI. A red-tailed hawk from Eugene and an osprey collected from Dorena Reservoir (east of Cottage Grove) May 10 have also tested positive.
A map of the quarantine areas is available online. Because of federal and international disease control requirements, quarantine areas must extend a minimum of 6.2 miles around the infected property.
Cases in King County
Meanwhile, two more flocks in Washington tested positive for the H5N1 avian flu on May 24, both in King County, according to the state Department of Agriculture. The flock owners called the WSDA Sick Bird Hotline and reported sudden deaths and signs of lethargy and depression in their small flocks.
“Both death and neurological symptoms such as head bobbing, walking abnormally, and lack of fear are especially prominent in both domestic and wild waterfowl in this year’s HPAI outbreak,” Dr. Amber Itle, state veterinarian, said.
Outbreaks of the H5N1 bird flu have devastated commercial poultry operations in the Midwest this year, killing over 37 million chickens and turkeys. HPAI has yet to show up in commercial flocks in the West, but the disease has been found in backyard flocks throughout the region, including in Colorado, Wyoming, Montana and Utah.