MADISON, Wis. — The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) has identified a case of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in a backyard flock in St. Croix County.

HPAI viruses are highly contagious and often fatal to domestic poultry. The disease can be spread by contact with infected birds, equipment, or clothing worn by anyone working with the animals. To help prevent spread, DATCP continues to ask poultry owners and those working around poultry to use enhanced biosecurity practices, which includes washing hands, disinfecting equipment, restricting access to birds, and separating new birds from existing flocks for at least 30 days.

Poultry owners also are asked, when possible, to keep birds indoors to minimize exposure to wild birds and their droppings.

This year, 16 Wisconsin counties have been confirmed with HPAI. All infected flocks are depopulated to prevent spread of the disease. DATCP reminds Wisconsin poultry and other livestock owners to register their premises, which is required by state law. Registration helps animal health officials communicate with flock owners during disease outbreaks.

To report increased mortality or signs of illness among domestic birds, contact DATCP at (608) 224-4872 (business hours) or (800) 943-0003 (after hours and weekends). For updates on how the virus is affecting domestic birds in Wisconsin and to find resources on protecting flocks, visit DATCP’s HPAI webpage.​

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