FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – Two waterfowl have died due to avian influenza (HPAI) at Roeding Park, according to the City of Fresno.
The Fresno Chaffee Zoo has been monitoring the virus for several months and back in July, they decided to take precautionary measures to protect their birds. The Bird Show is still on pause, aviaries have been closed, and some birds have been moved off their habitat.
“While this is a highly infectious disease, our teams enacted our safety plan months ago for this very scenario. We are protecting all of our birds and will continue to monitor the level of risk to take further precautions.”-Dr. Shannon Nodolf, Chief Veterinarian Officer
These flu viruses occur naturally among birds. Wild birds worldwide carry the viruses, but usually don’t get sick from them. But it a very contagious and can cause life-threatening illnesses in susceptible birds, including many zoo species.
According to Dr. Kenny Banh of UCSF Fresno, avian influenza does not normally infect people, but it does happen on rare occasions. Currently, no known human-to-human spread has occurred with this current strain that is currently circulating in birds in the United States.