Bird flu outbreak forces Gov. Walker to declare state of emergency

 Governor Scott Walker has declared a state of emergency as the spread of bird flu continues in Wisconsin.  Three flocks in three different counties have now been infected, including one in Jefferson County.  Wisconsin is one of about a dozen U.S. states to be hit with the highly contagious strain of H5-N2, believed to be spread by migrating geese.

In his statement, Governor Walker notes that this strain of avian flu is not a threat to humans.  However, it can wipe out entire flocks of commercial poultry very quickly, so outbreaks mean flocks found to be infected must be destroyed.

Wisconsin is one of the top 20 states for chicken and egg production, and this outbreak has already threatened the industry.  International companies have red flagged Wisconsin chicken and eggs, meaning they will not import them until the threat is over.

By declaring a state of emergency, Governor Walker has authorized the state's National Guard to help contain the disease.

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