Under The Radar

Just because you don’t hear as much about bird flu as you did three or four years ago, doesn’t mean resources are not being targeted. The work continues.

Avian Influenza Surveillance Continues

State and federal wildlife agencies will continue to test wild birds for early detection of highly pathogenic strains of avian influenza.

A total of 200 samples from live birds will be taken through September in conjunction with duck banding efforts, and 400 samples from hunter-harvested ducks will be collected in September and October.

Hunters may be asked if their ducks can be sampled by an employee with the North Dakota Game and Fish Department, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service or U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Wildlife Services. Sampling only takes a few minutes and does not damage birds.

In addition, morbidity and mortality surveillance of any unusual bird die-offs or illnesses will continue through October.

Avian influenza testing efforts began nationwide in 2006, and all samples for the highly pathogenic H5N1 subtype have tested negative.