Avian Flu Control Area Lifted

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The board says about 400,000 birds were affected by the strain of avian flu. The board says about 400,000 birds were affected by the strain of avian flu.

The Indiana State Board of Animal Health says the control area created in response to the avian flu outbreak in Dubois County has been lifted by the Indiana State Veterinarian. Poultry owners in the 6.2-mile area can "resume normal operations and movements of birds and poultry products."

The control area has been in place for just over one month after the highly pathogenic avian influenza was found on a commercial turkey farm in Dubois County. Since January 15, all poultry and poultry products were not able to leave the area unless they tested negative for avian flu and were issued a permit by the BOAH.

"We are pleased to be where we are today, just 38 days after HPAI was identified in Dubois County," said Indiana State Veterinarian Bret Marsh. "This is an unprecedented event for the state of Indiana, and the level of cooperation and response at all levels has been incredible. The BOAH team and I are grateful for the hard work of our local, state, federal and industry partners who came together to bring this event to a close."

The BOAH says all farms consistently tested negative throughout the entire period of the control area. Based on guidelines established by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the negative tests allowed for the control area to be lifted.

The BOAH adds quarantines remain on nine other commercial turkey farms in which the low-pathogenic avian flu virus was identified. The farms were depopulated and the quarantines will continue until "specific cleaning and disinfection requirements are complete."

The Purdue University Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory performed over 4,300 avian flu tests during the 38-day period. Officials reiterated that avian flu does not affect food safety and poultry meat and eggs are safe to eat.

Purdue University Professor of Agricultural Economics Philip Paarlberg says the local economy will be affected multiple ways.
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