Avian Flu Found at Second Commercial Duck Farm in Elkhart County

by | Apr 13, 2022 | Indiana Agriculture News, News Feed

Avian influenza has been found at a second duck farm in northern Indiana, according to the Indiana State Board of Animal Health.

Health officials said tests came back presumptive-positive at a farm in Elkhart County, which is the second farm in that county to report positive tests bringing the total number of Indiana farms this year with positive tests to eight.

Board of Animal Health staff are working to notify flock owners in the 10-kilometer area around that second farm to begin testing.

The first Elkhart County duck farm had its flock of nearly 4,700 ducks depopulated, the state announced this week.  The flock on the second Elkhart County duck farm is estimated at about 6,000 ducks.

Indiana ranks first in the U.S. in duck production, according to the USDA.

The first case of avian influenza was reported on Feb. 9, when the state confirmed a case at a commercial turkey farm in Dubois County in southern Indiana.  Within weeks, five more turkey farms in Dubois and Greene counties were also infected.  Those previous cases led to the depopulation of more than 171,000 commercial turkeys in the state.

BOAH adds that avian influenza does not present a food safety risk; poultry and eggs are safe to eat. Officials are not aware of any public health significance with this virus. No cases of human infection have been reported.

Hobby poultry owners are encouraged to be aware of the signs of avian influenza and report illness and/or death to the USDA Healthy Birds Hotline:  866-536-7593. Callers will be routed to a state or federal veterinarian in Indiana for a case assessment. Dead birds should be double-bagged and refrigerated for possible testing.      

Signs include: sudden death without clinical signs; lack of energy or appetite; decreased egg production; soft-shelled or misshapen eggs; swelling or purple discoloration of head, eyelids, comb, hocks; nasal discharge; coughing; sneezing; lack of coordination; and diarrhea.

Click HERE for additional information about backyard bird health.

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