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Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza Detected in Newaygo County Flock

The risk for HPAI will remain high as wild birds continue their spring migration; keeping wild birds away is essential to protecting animal health

LANSING, MI - Following a report to the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD), the Michigan State University Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory has detected the presence of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in a commercial poultry facility from Newaygo County. Since the disease was first detected in Michigan in 2022, this is the seventh detection of HPAI in a commercial facility, and the first detection in Newaygo County. As wild birds complete their spring migration, it is crucial for every producer to protect their animals from wild birds and the germs they could be carrying.

"MDARD continues to thoroughly and robustly respond to the detection of HPAI with an all-hands-on-deck approach with our federal, state, and local partners," said MDARD Director Tim Boring.  "Biosecurity remains the best tool available to combat HPAI, and we continue to encourage producers of all sizes to enhance their biosecurity measures to reduce the risk of introducing this disease to their farm.  MDARD is addressing this outbreak from every angle, including working to help mitigate the economic impacts on local communities. We remain laser-focused on our mission to protect animal and public health."

"Taking preventative measures to keep wild birds away from farms is essential to combatting HPAI and limiting its impact," said State Veterinarian Dr. Nora Wineland, DVM, MS, DACVPM. "As wild birds continue to migrate and the outside temperatures remain cool and temperate, conditions are ideal for the virus to spread. This is why it is so vital for producers to assess the risks on their premises and tighten protocols. Protecting animal health is of the utmost importance."

HPAI is a highly contagious virus that can be spread in various ways, including by wild birds, through contact with infected poultry, by equipment, and on the clothing and shoes of caretakers. To protect other facilities in Michigan, the premises is currently under quarantine, and the birds will be depopulated to prevent disease spread. These efforts also help to ensure the safety and integrity of the commercial food supply.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the public health risk associated with avian influenza remains low. Also, no animals or products infected with HPAI will enter the commercial food chain. As a reminder, people should properly handle and cook all food.

Whether it's a few backyard birds or a large commercial flock, following a few key steps is fundamental to protect the health and vitality of Michigan's domestic birds:

  • Prevent contact between domestic and wild birds by bringing them indoors or ensuring their outdoor area is fully enclosed.
  • Wash your hands before and after handling birds as well as when moving between different coops.
  • Disinfect boots and other gear when moving between coops.
  • Do not share equipment or other supplies between coops or other farms.
  • Clean and disinfect equipment and other supplies between If it cannot be disinfected, discard it.
  • Use well or municipal water as drinking water for birds.
  • Keep poultry feed secure to ensure there is no contact between the feed/feed ingredients and wild birds or rodents.

MDARD is continuing to work diligently with local, state, and federal partners to quickly respond to reports of HPAI to best mitigate the spread of the disease and provide outreach.

Reporting Possible Cases

For Domestic Birds

Domestic bird owners and caretakers should watch for multiple sudden deaths in the flock, a drop in egg production, a significant decrease in water consumption, diarrhea, sneezing/coughing, or an increase in sick birds. If avian influenza is suspected in domestic birds, contact MDARD immediately at 800-292-3939 (daytime) or 517-373-0440 (after- hours).

For Wild Birds

If anyone notices what appears to be unusual or unexplained deaths among wild bird populations, please report these cases to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) by:

  • Using the DNR's Eyes in the Field app. Choose the Diseased Wildlife option among the selections for Observation Forms.
  • Calling the DNR Wildlife Disease Laboratory at 517-336-

Stay Up to Date

Subscribe to receive email notifications by visiting MDARD's website and clicking on the Avian Influenza link. After entering a valid email address, subscribers will receive updates and alerts regarding the status of avian influenza in Michigan whenever there are new developments to report. Additional resources can also be found at

More information on avian influenza and how to protect flocks through preventative measures can be found on the U.S. Department of Agriculture's website.