Bird flu buffer zone established in US

By Georgi Gyton contact

- Last updated on GMT

The quarantine zone will restrict the movement of eggs, poultry and poultry products
The quarantine zone will restrict the movement of eggs, poultry and poultry products

Related tags: Avian influenza

Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) has adopted an emergency rule to established a 20-mile restriction zone around two locations where bird flu has been discovered.

It activated a multi-agency response plan on 2 January 2015, following confirmation that the H5N2 strain of avian influenza had been discovered in domestic bird in Benton County, with a second infected flock then identified in the area.

The quarantine zone, which includes parts of Benton and Franklin counties, will restrict the movement of eggs, poultry and poultry products, however exemptions will be made for operations that obtain special permits and meet specific criteria, it said.

According to a statement by the WSDA, the USDA plans to increase the amount of testing carried out on poultry and other domestic birds within a 10 kilometre radius if the two effected flocks.

The spread of HPAI would be costly to the poultry industry, consumers and taxpayers, said WSDA. In the mid-1980s, an outbreak in the northeastern states lead to the destruction of 17 million birds at a cost of nearly $65m.

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