SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WICS/WRSP) — Three wild geese in Illinois have tested positive for Eurasian H5 Avian Influenza (Avian Flu).
The Canada geese were found in Will County. They were tested last week.
The findings were confirmed by the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services at the National Veterinary Services Laboratory on March 10.
"While Illinois has not seen any Avian Flu in backyard or commercial poultry within the state this year, this finding demonstrates that the virus is present and may be circulating within the wild bird population in Illinois. Anyone that owns birds or is involved with poultry production, whether on a small or commercial level, should be aware of this finding and take precautions to protect their flock."
State Agriculture officials said that the flock is non-commercial and the affected premises in McLean County have been quarantined. Officials add that birds on the property will be depopulated to prevent the spread of the disease.
Producers and owners should review their biosecurity plans and prevent contact with wild birds and their droppings. IDOA also strongly encourages all producers to keep birds indoors when possible.
Flock owners, managers or veterinarians should report any unusual findings in domestic poultry such as increase in mortality, decrease in water consumption, decrease in egg production, or respiratory signs including coughing and sneezing immediately to the IDOA at 217-782-4944 or the USDA at 866-536-7593.
Goose hunters or others who may encounter sick or deceased wild birds should also take measures to protect themselves, their poultry, and pets. For specific measures please consult the Avian Flu fact sheet for hunters at https://www.aphis.usda.gov/publications/animal_health/2015/fsc_hpai_hunters.pdf.
If people encounter five or more deceased wild waterfowl, waterbirds, or raptors in one location, they should contact their local IDNR district wildlife biologist (https://www.wildlifeillinois.org/sidebar/contact-an-idnr-district-wildlife-biologist/) or USDA Wildlife Services at 1-866-487-3297.
For more information regarding Avian Flu including links to the USDA’s websites and biosecurity tips please visit IDOA’s website at Alerts and Important Animal Health Information - Animal Health and Welfare (illinois.gov).