TUMALO, OR -- Nearly two weeks after first discovering bird flu in Deschutes County, the Oregon Department of Agriculture has implemented a quarantine zone. Bruce Pokarney with the ODA tells KBND News the restricted area encompasses about a 10-mile radius surrounding the Tumalo property where the highly pathogenic avian influenza was detected. "That flock has been humanely euthanized and disposed of, the premises has been cleaned and disinfected. Now it’s a lot of outreach and education in the immediate area, along with additional surveillance just to make sure there’s been no spread of the disease." Pokarney says, "What that really does is establishes a zone to prevent the spread of high-path avian influenza. Anybody that has poultry or poultry products, the movement of those animals and products are restricted in and out of that quarantine zone unless they contact the Oregon Department of Agriculture and get a special permit."
He says the agency is also asking backyard bird owners to carefully monitor their flocks and immediately report any unusual behavior or sudden bird deaths to the ODA. "What we’re really talking about are these domestic birds that people own, not for commercial purposes. It’s important to know that so far, we have not had any detection of high-path avian influenza in commercial poultry in Oregon. They continue to be safe and protected, but the backyard birds are probably the most vulnerable at this time." The ODA is asking domestic bird owners to report sick or dead birds to the agency. Pokarney says the quarantine will be lifted if there are no new bird flu detections within the next 30 days.