SHEBOYGAN COUNTY, Wis. (WFRV) – New cases of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) have been detected in three more Wisconsin counties, including one county located in Northeast Wisconsin, according to the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP).

On Thursday, the DATCP confirmed new cases of HPAI have been confirmed in Columbia, Polk and Sheboygan counties.

Officials say the latest cases were identified in:

  • Columbia County, backyard mixed species
  • Sheboygan County, backyard mixed species
  • Polk County, commercial poultry

“As avian influenza continues to affect poultry in Wisconsin and throughout the nation, we’re reminding flock owners that strong biosecurity is our best defense against this devastating disease,” said State Veterinarian Dr. Darlene Konkle. “We urge everyone working around poultry to increase their biosecurity measures and continue reporting signs of illness to help us prevent spread of the virus.”    

DATCP and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) say they are actively working with animal health officials in response efforts and depopulation efforts are underway at each of the three locations.

Signs of HPAI in infected birds include:

  • Sudden death without clinical signs
  • Lack of energy or appetite
  • Decrease in egg production; soft, misshapen eggs
  • Purple discoloration of wattles, comb, and legs
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Runny nose, coughing, sneezing
  • Stumbling or falling down
  • Diarrhea

Due to increasing cases across Wisconsin, on April 8, the DATCP announced the suspension of all poultry shows, exhibitions and swap meets across the state. This suspension will last through May 31.

Anyone who would like to report increased mortality or signs of disease among domestic birds can contact DATCP at (608) 224-4872.