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Chicken owners beware: Bird flu is back in New York state

Several chickens in a pen.
Jeremy Moule

The New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets announced that it is banning live fowl shows to stop the spread of bird flu.

According to a statement, the disease technically known as highly pathogenic avian influenza — or HPAI — has been detected in at least four flocks of farm-raised birds, and even more wild birds.

So far, no human cases have been detected in the U.S. The Department of Agriculture said they’ll be reassessing the risk in May.

Until then, everyone from backyard chicken enthusiasts to professional farmers are reminded to continue basic precautions like limiting visitors to your birds, disinfecting hands, boots, and tools, and locking entrances to coops overnight.

Even the Seneca Park Zoo announced they’ll be limiting their birds’ access to outdoor spaces.

To report sick birds, an unexplained high number of deaths, or sudden drop in egg production, you can contact the Department’s Division of Animal Industry at (518) 457-3502 or the USDA at (866) 536-7593.

Veronica Volk is a senior editor and producer for WXXI News.