Cows infected with bird flu have died in 5 states as experts closely monitor the disease

  • Dairy cows infected with bird flu in five US states have died or been slaughtered by farmers because they failed to recover. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) says the vast majority of cows are recovering well.
  • Avian flu infections cause reduced milk production, digestive problems, fever and reduced appetite, and can lead to secondary infections that can be fatal.
  • The USDA reported that no virus particles were found in samples of ground beef collected at retail stores, and no avian flu viruses were detected after cooking ground beef to medium rare. or cooked after being injected with a virus substitute as part of an experiment.

Dairy cows infected with bird flu in five U.S. states have died or been slaughtered by farmers because they failed to recover, state officials and academics told Reuters.

Reports of deaths suggest the outbreak of bird flu in cows may have a greater economic impact in the agricultural belt than initially thought. Farmers have long culled poultry infected with the virus, but cows cost much more to raise than chickens or turkeys.

A spokesperson for the U.S. Department of Agriculture said the agency is aware of a few deaths, but the vast majority of cows are recovering well. Reuters was unable to determine the total number of cows infected with bird flu that died or were killed in South Dakota, Michigan, Texas, Ohio and Colorado.

WHICH CONFIRMS THE FIRST HUMAN DEATH FROM AVIAN INFLUENZA A(H5N2)

Avian flu has infected dairy cows in more than 80 herds in 10 states since late March, according to the USDA.

Some animals have died from secondary infections contracted after bird flu weakened their immune systems, said state veterinarians, agriculture officials and academics who were helping the state fight bird flu. Other cows were killed by farmers because they failed to recover from the virus.

According to farmers and veterinarians, cattle infected with bird flu suffer from reduced milk production, digestive problems, fever and reduced appetite.

Cows graze in an oil production field in Midland, Texas, February 13, 2019. Dairy cows infected with bird flu have died or been slaughtered by farmers because they have not recovered in five U.S. states . (Reuters/Nick Oxford/file photo)

In South Dakota, a 1,700-cow dairy sent a dozen animals to slaughter after they failed to recover from the virus, and killed another dozen who contracted secondary infections, a said Russ Daly, South Dakota State University professor and South Dakota State University veterinarian. state extension office who spoke with the farm.

“You get sick from one illness, it creates a domino effect for other things, like routine pneumonia and digestive issues,” Daly said.

A Michigan farm killed about 10% of its 200 infected cows after they, too, failed to recover from the virus, said Phil Durst, a Michigan State University Extension educator who spoke with this farm.

Michigan has more confirmed infections in cattle than any other state, as well as two in three confirmed cases of U.S. dairy workers who…

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