SANTA ANA (CNS) – Six birds have tested positive for avian influenza A, also known as bird flu, the Orange County Health Care Agency reported Friday.
“Avian flu is present in Orange County and while the risk of transmission to humans is low, residents should stay away from any dead birds.,” said Dr. Regina Chinsio-Kwong, Orange County’s health officer and chief medical officer. “Bird flu is very contagious among birds and can sicken and even kill certain domesticated bird species including chickens, ducks and turkeys.”
Residents are advised to:
— avoid contact with wild birds, even if they don’t look sick;
— avoid surfaces that appear contaminated with saliva or feces from wild or domestic birds;
— keep dogs and other pets away from wild birds.; and
— if you become ill after unprotected exposure to a sick or dead bird contact your health care provider so you can be evaluated.
Bird owners are advised to follow additional safety measures, prevent contact of their birds with wild birds, and immediately report any sick birds.
Unusual occurrences of sick and dead wild birds should be reported to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife Mortality Reporting at wildlife.ca.gov/Conservation/Laboratories/Wildlife-Health/Monitoring/Mortality- Report. To report an unusual number of sick/dead commercial birds, call the California Department of Food and Agriculture at 866-922-2473.
Dead birds can also be reported online to westnile.ca.gov/report.