Bird flu threat has not yet reached the US
After testing more than 13,000 migratory birds in Alaska this summer,
the anticipated avian flu outbreaks in North American birds have not yet
No positive results for the avian
flu virus, H5N1, have been detected during the testing. Now other states
have begun preparations for the fall migration, with a nationwide goal of
100,000 birds to be tested this year.
"Although no high-path H5N1 virus has yet been detected," said Interior
Secretary Dirk Kempthorne, "we must remain vigilant and thorough in this
important detection and early warning program."
Alaska has been targeted as a testing site because many birds migrating from
the influenza hot zones in Asia move there during the summer. There the Asian
birds mingle with many birds from other states that also migrate to Alaska in
the summer months.
Scientists hope that early diagnosis would enable the government to take any
Now that fall is approaching, both state and federal biologists across the
nation have begun capturing and sampling various migratory birds as they begin
their southern migration.
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