Bird flu in Idaho sends Zoo Boise birds into quarantine. Here’s what we know

As bird flu spreads in Idaho, Zoo Boise has taken steps to protect its winged creatures.

Most of the birds affected are migratory populations, such as ducks and geese, not those that live in Idaho year-round, Fish and Game spokesman Roger Phillips said in Idaho. Statesman.

Ducks and geese are getting sick and dying in a number of Boise parks, Boise Parks and Recreation Director Doug Holloway told the Statesman. Infected birds have been reported at Ann Morrison, Redwood, Julia Davis, Esther Simplot and Bernadine Quinn Riverside parks.

“I think people are a bit shocked,” Holloway told the Statesman. It’s a double-edged sword – people are tired of seeing goose waste in parks, but at the same time they don’t want to see inhuman passages for geese and ducks, he said added.

The zoo has received a few inquiries about missing birds, but plans to continue protective measures until state and federal officials say the flu is over and it’s safe for the birds to be. outside,” Holloway said.

According to Centers for Disaster Control and Prevention, waterfowl are reservoirs of avian influenza, which means that the virus lives and grows naturally in their bodies. With built-in immunity, they don’t always get sick, but they can transmit the virus to non-migratory birds and Idaho poultry.

Resident birds are vulnerable to disease and death, the Statesman previously reported. With no treatment or vaccine available, bird flu must “run its course,” Idaho Fish and Game said in a statement. Press release.

Zoo Boise builds bird droppings barrier

In response, Zoo Boise wasted no time in quarantining the birds.

Because the spreads of the virus through the saliva, nasal secretions and feces of infected birds, birds at Zoo Boise have been isolated. The Boise Zoo took precautions in late April as soon as bird flu arrived in Idaho, Holloway said.

Some birds have been brought indoors, and birds exhibited outdoors, such as penguins and sea eagles, are under newly added canopies, which are sealed to protect the enclosures from bird droppings.

As outdoor display birds, penguins and sea eagles may be more exposed to the virus, Holloway said, but none of the birds showed signs of infection as of June 16.

Many birds on display indoors, such as the West African crowned crane, come from warm places and are accustomed to spending time indoors during the winter. Still, they miss seeing us, Holloway said.

“They would love to be on display and interact with our guests at the zoo,” he told the Statesman.

The Boise Zoo is home to between 40 and 50 birds, including rare and vulnerable Steller’s sea eagles. Sea eagles remain on display, alongside penguins and birds from the Gorongosa display aviary.

Even after this bird flu episode has run its course – which could be this summer, the Previously reported statesman – conservation centers like Zoo Boise will not be done with protecting its birds. Bird flu is associated with mass migrations of waterfowl through Idaho and will periodically return to the state, Phillips said.

The public can prevent waterfowl from congregating and spreading disease by removing bird feeders and reporting sick animals to Idaho Fish and Game. These are some easy preventative measures people can do in their daily lives, Phillips said.

Comments are closed.