Bird Flu outbreak causes state of emergency in Iowa Friday.
A fast-expanding bird-flu outbreak caused Iowa to declare an emergency response as the national poultry death toll climbed to record-breaking scales.
Iowa has become the third state to declare a state of emergency.
Officials in Iowa said they’ve identified four more suspected cases of avian influenza among more than 16 million affected birds.
The Wall Street Journal claims that the virus strain poses a low risk to human health.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say that no human infections have been identified.
The total number of poultry to die from either natural causes or extermination is expected to reach 21 million based on latest cases in Iowa.
If the expected number is correct, it would exceed that of the 17 million birds that were killed in 1980s U.S. outbreak.
The disease has quickly spread to Iowa’s egg industry within the last two weeks as it has affected more that 25% of the egg-laying hens in the state.
The virus had previously hit hard in Minnesota and has affected poultry in more than a dozen states.
Scientists claim that the virus is less likely to survive in higher temperatures so Iowa officials that as warmer temperatures come in, the virus will spread slower.
“We are taking the matter very seriously and believe declaring a state of emergency is the best way to make all resources available,” Gov. Branstad said on Friday.
The proclamation of disaster emergency last declared Friday has allowed state officials to deploy more people and resources to focus on the outbreak.
The USDA recieved first report of the strain in December in wild fowl in Washington state.
The strain has since traveled to states as far away as Arkansas, Kansas, and South Dakota.