MORONI—The Utah Department of Agriculture and Food (UDAF) has confirmed that Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) has affected several thousand turkeys at a North Sanpete turkey farm and is looking to see if the disease has spread.
“So far, our findings have been confined to just one farm,” Bailee Woolstenhulme, a UDAF spokesperson said. She said UDAF personnel are testing all flocks within an approximate 6-mile radius.
The disease is not a threat to humans but is very dangerous to birds. Symptoms are a nasal discharge, decreased appetite, decreased water consumption and a lack of physical coordination.
Dr. Dean Taylor, state veterinarian, said, “We urge bird owners to remain vigilant in watching for symptoms in their flocks and to practice proper biosecurity measures.”
If avian flu is found, the remedy is the immediate destruction of the entire flock. Department personnel were dispatched to the farm in question to assist with what UDAF calls “depopulation.”
If symptoms are observed in domestic birds, owners are urged to contact the state veterinarian’s office immediately at email@example.com.
Wild birds, including songbirds, can spread the contagion to domestic flocks.
The Sanpete Messenger reached out to Pitman Farms at their Moroni plant for comment, but the company failed to return our calls.
According to the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention, avian flu is not a public health concern. Only one human case of HPAI has been detected in the United States.