Minnesota's governor has declared a state of emergency to deal with the rapidly spreading avian influenza outbreaks.
Due to the high number of cases of avian influenza that have been confirmed recently in Minnesota, Gov. Mark Dayton has declared a state of emergency. With the declaration, Dayton has authorized the National Guard to be called up for duty if needed.
The state of emergency was called for on April 23, one day after the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) confirmed 13 new outbreaks of H5N2 avian influenza in commercial turkey flocks. Several new avian influenza cases have since been confirmed in Minnesota and in neighboring states. The outbreaks have affected more than 2.6 million birds in the state and the virus continues to spread.
Several days prior to Minnesota’s state of emergency declaration, a similar declaration was made in Wisconsin by Gov. Scott Walker.
H5N2 avian influenza has been detected in three Wisconsin poultry flocks, affecting tens of thousands of chickens and turkeys. The virus was discovered in a commercial flock of 126,000 turkeys in Barron County, as well as in a flock of 40 mixed breed birds in Juneau County, the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection (WDATCP) reported on April 16. The state’s first confirmed case of avian influenza was reported on April 13, infecting a flock of about 180,000 egg-laying chickens in Jefferson County.