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Pennsylvania reports 1st case of avian flu in backyard flock

KDKA-TV Evening Forecast (8/12)
KDKA-TV Evening Forecast (8/12) 03:38

UPPER MOUNT BETHEL, Pa. (KDKA) — The first case of avian flu in a non-commercial backyard flock was reported in Pennsylvania, the state Department of Agriculture announced Friday. 

Chickens and a duck from a flock in Upper Mount Bethel Township in Northampton County were confirmed to be infected with highly pathogenic avian influenza after a dead turkey vulture was found on the property, the agriculture department said. 

The department is reminding poultry owners -- backyard flocks and commercial producers -- to be vigilant, especially as wild bird migration season picks up again. The department said the newest infections come amid a weeks-long lull in avian flu detection. 

The department has quarantined the farm and established a "control area" with a 10 km perimeter. It said eggs and poultry are still safe to eat and there's no risk to human health, but it does impact business owners who rely on their birds. 

"Poultry and eggs in Northampton County bring in $141 million in sales to support the county's economy," Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding said. "Backyard bird owners should recognize that this disease is deadly to their birds. Protecting their birds helps protect neighboring poultry farms and the families and jobs that depend on those businesses."

For more information on how to protect your flock, click here.

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