H7 avian flu detected in pair of hunter-shot mallards in state of Georgia
Routine testing as part of avian influenza surveillance in wild birds found low levels of H7 RNA in two mallards shot in December by hunters in Georgia's McIntosh Country.
In a news report, the Georgia Farm Bureau said tests were conducted by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) wildlife services, which found small amounts of avian influenza nucleic acid in swab samples collected from the two American green-winged teal ducks. McIntosh County is on the Georgia coast.
Robert Cobb, DVM, Georgia's state veterinarian, said, "We know this virus is out there in the wild year-round and the detection of the virus in these wild ducks serves as a reminder for poultry producers to continue to be vigilant about following recommended biosecurity measures."
In the early spring of 2017, four southeastern states—Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, and Tennessee—reported detections of H7N9 avian influenza at poultry farms. The virus isn't related to H7N9 circulating in China, and most of the detections involved the low-pathogenic form of the virus.
Jan 24 Georgia Farm Bureau report
UK detects H5N6 in 3 more locations
The United Kingdom today reported three more highly pathogenic H5N6 outbreaks that affected three different locations, one of them in London.
All of the detections involved wild birds found dead, according to a notification from the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE). Aside from two mute swans found dead in a park in London, the virus was found in a tufted duck found dead in a natural park in the city of Wakefield in West Yorkshire County, about 185 miles north of London, and in eight mallards and a moorhen in Rutland County, about 100 miles north of London. The birds were found on Jan 29, and tests show the virus is a reassortant between H5N8 that has circulated in Europe and European N6 viruses.
The UK reported its first H5N6 outbreak in the middle of January, and since then has reported five more. The Netherlands, Germany, and Switzerland have also reported H5N6, which has mostly been found in wild birds.
Jan 30 OIE report on H5N6 in the UK