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Minnesota has 66 sites of confirmed avian flu infection

There are 66 sites of confirmed avian flu infection in Minnesota as of Tuesday, May 3. The inventory of flocks diagnosed with H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza is about 2.73 million, according to the Minnesota Board of Animal Health.

Stock photo of turkeys raised for meat
The inventory of flocks in Minnesota diagnosed with H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza is about 2.73 million, according to the Minnesota Board of Animal Health. Sixty-six infection sites have been confirmed as of the Tuesday, May 3, report.
Source / Adobe Stock
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WILLMAR, Minn. — Minnesota continues to add to its list of avian flu infection sites — with 66 confirmed sites — while the number of birds affected has not changed drastically since last week.

Three of the four new sites announced by the Minnesota Board of Animal Health since last week were small backyard producers, including two in Chisago County. Flocks of 55 and 30 unspecified poultry were confirmed April 30, the first sites in that county.

Morrison County has its 12th infection site, this one a backyard producer of 40 birds confirmed April 30.

Stearns County now has a ninth site of infection, a commercial turkey flock of 10,000 breeder hens confirmed infected April 29.

The Board of Animal Health's tally of confirmed diagnoses of H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza as of Tuesday afternoon stands at 2,728,297.

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The Board of Animal Health's web page devoted to avian flu response in the state — which can be found at bah.state.mn.us/hpai — is updated by noon each weekday with the information that is known about poultry infection sites. Data from previous days also may be updated by quality control staff if more accurate information is gathered later.

According to that page, commercial meat turkey operations remain the vast majority of the 66 sites. Recently, several more backyard producers have been confirmed, and that production category now stands at 10 sites. There have now been four sites of commercial turkey breeder hens, and two chicken flocks in Morrison County, one broiler and one egg layer operation.

The first Minnesota cases of the disease — which is fatal to domestic poultry — were confirmed March 25.

A total of 21 counties in the state have been impacted so far. The other affected counties are Becker, Benton, Big Stone, Blue Earth, Carver, Dodge, Kandiyohi, Lac qui Parle, LeSueur, Meeker, Mower, Otter Tail, Renville, Rice, Swift, Todd, Waseca and Yellow Medicine.

Susan Lunneborg is the news editor of the West Central Tribune in Willmar, Minnesota. A journalist for more than 25 years, she has worked as a reporter and editor at newspapers in the Dakotas and Minnesota.
Lunneborg can be reached at: slunneborg@wctib.com or 320-214-4343.
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