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Avian influenza spreading through poultry nationwide; Arkansas farmers brace for impacts

Due to the spreading of Avian flu across the U.S. and 34 states having confirmed cases, Arkansas poultry farmers are being recommended to take precautions.

ARKANSAS, USA — A flu that is nearly 100% lethal to poultry is spreading across the U.S. Thirty-four states have had confirmed cases of the deadly H5N1 avian influenza, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and poultry farmers in Arkansas should continue taking precautions.

The most recent outbreaks were in backyard cases in Oregon and Washington state. Oklahoma was added to the list of states after the disease was confirmed in a commercial breeder flock in Sequoyah County on May 1, the USDA reported.

Suspected cases are tested in the state in which they were found with samples also sent to the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, or APHIS, National Veterinary Services Laboratories in Ames, Iowa, for confirmation. APHIS is part of USDA. APHIS has maps and graphs detailing the locations and numbers of flocks affected.

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