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Avian influenza in cattle and young goats in the United States

Avian influenza in cattle and young goats in the United States

Bird flu virus has been detected in dairy cows in Kansas and Texas, USA. This was reported by the United States Department of Agriculture. A week ago, the virus was also detected in young dairy goats. The consequences are still unclear.

Because of a mysterious illness in dairy cows in Texas, Kansas, and New Mexico, milk samples and swabs from the animals' respiratory tracts have been examined. In the states of Kansas and Texas, bird flu virus was detected in milk samples from two farms and in swabs collected from one farm in Texas. Symptoms in cows include decreased milk production and poor feed intake. Many older cows had flu-like symptoms with fever and discolored milk.

The highly pathogenic H5N1 virus continues to cause outbreaks in poultry and wild birds in several states across the United States. Cows are often infected by wild birds. A highly pathogenic virus was detected last week, but young goats on a farm are also housed with many chickens.

The virus is not mutated

The highly pathogenic avian influenza virus found in dairy cows is not suitable for animals. According to the US Department of Agriculture, this is the original bird flu virus.

“No mutations have been found that allow the virus to reproduce better in mammals or humans,” say experts Evelien Germeraad and Wim van der Boel of Wageningen Bioveterinary Research. 'Further research is being conducted with the viruses discovered. As of now nothing can be said about the consequences. We are waiting for the investigation in America'' he said.

Experts believe that vigilance is necessary if a highly pathogenic bird flu virus is detected. 'Biosecurity is very good in the Netherlands and the sector is very cautious. Contact with wild birds should be avoided and vigilance is essential.'