Poultry farmers asked to keep birds indoors after deadly bird flu detected

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Source: CBC

Deadly strain of avian influenza flu detected in wild goose near Elrose

Poultry farmers in Saskatchewan—particularly ones with small flocks—are being encouraged to keep their birds
indoors after agriculture officials say a highly pathogenic type of bird flu was detected in a goose.

The province says in a news release that the Canadian Food Inspection Agency confirmed the H5 strain of avian influenza was detected in a wild snow goose that was found near Elrose, a community about 250 km northwest of Regina.

The news release says small flocks are considered high-risk for highly pathogenic avian influenza because they are commonly allowed access to outdoor pens or are free-range. It says that means there’s a high probability of contact with wild birds or areas visited by wild birds that may be contaminated with the virus.

Saskatchewan’s agriculture ministry says the last time highly pathogenic avian influenza was found in the province in either commercial poultry or wild birds was in 2007.

Small flock owners are encouraged to confine their birds indoors if at all possible during this high-risk period of wild bird migration, the ministry says.