Gov. Scott Walker signed an executive order April 20 authorizing the Wisconsin National Guard to assist authorities in the response to the avian influenza virus affecting Jefferson, Juneau, and Barron counties.
“We must act quickly and efficiently to contain the outbreak and protect domestic poultry,” Walker said.
According to the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection (DATCP), avian influenza has been detected in three Wisconsin poultry flocks, including a backyard flock in Juneau County containing 40 mixed breed birds.
Walker’s executive order allows the Wisconsin National Guard to assist in the response and help contain the outbreak, as well as offer assistance in site clean-up. The state veterinarian, through DATCP, requested up to 14 Guard personnel be made available, on a rotating schedule, for immediate assistance. This assistance is necessary because federal resources are thin, due to avian influenza virus outbreaks in other states, particularly in the Midwest.
If you find a sick or dead bird, do not touch it. For domestic birds, call DATCP’s Division of Animal Health at 1-800-572-8981. For wild birds, call the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources at 1-800-433-1810.