Secretary Naig Comments on Confirmation of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza in a Wild Bird in South Carolina

DES MOINES, Iowa (Jan. 14, 2022) – Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig issued the following statement today after the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) confirmed Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) in a wild bird in South Carolina. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention considers the risk to the general public from HPAI H5 infections to be low. However, it has the potential to spread among commercial, backyard and wild bird populations, posing a risk to animal health.

“This confirmation of high path avian influenza in a wild bird in South Carolina highlights the risks facing our poultry producers. We appreciate USDA testing efforts that help identify disease and serve as an early warning system.

“This is a good reminder to Iowa’s livestock producers that now is the time to evaluate and look for opportunities to strengthen your farm’s biosecurity protocols and closely monitor the health of your animals. If you observe sick animals or clinical signs that are consistent with HPAI, you should contact your veterinarian and state or federal animal health officials immediately.

“HPAI and other foreign animal diseases pose a significant risk to Iowa agriculture. Our team at the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship will continue working with USDA, livestock producers and other stakeholders to develop, test and strengthen our foreign animal disease preparedness and response plans.”

Additional information and resources about HPAI and foreign animal disease preparedness are available here.

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About the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

Led by Secretary Mike Naig, the Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship serves the rural and urban residents that call Iowa home. Through its 14 diverse bureaus, the Department ensures animal health, food safety and consumer protection. It also promotes conservation efforts to preserve our land and enhance water quality for the next generation. Learn more at iowaagriculture.gov.

Media Contact:
Chloe Carson
Communications Director
515-326-1616
chloe.carson@iowaagriculture.gov