First bird flu cases in wildfowl reported in Los Angeles County this year
LA County animal control officers have found more than two dozen wild birds that tested positive for bird flu in Los Angeles County in 2016, with six of them dead and two more in critical condition, officials said. The birds, from multiple species, were found at five locations, ranging in age from six to 20 weeks old, and five of the birds tested positive for H5N1.
The first bird flu cases in wildfowl reported in Los Angeles County this year were found in January at the site of a breeding flock of feral ducks on the north fork of the Los Padres National Forest. The birds were found in two separate locations on the northeast slope of Red Hill. Eight of the birds tested positive for H5N1, and one was dead.
Last week, officials found five more birds at another Red Hill location near the intersection of Red Hill and Red Wood roads. One of these birds tested positive for H5N1. Officials said they did not know the exact location of each bird’s grave or cause of death, or the condition of the remaining birds.
Bird flu cases have been reported across the county this year to date in multiple locations, including the Big Tujunga and Pico DeMaya mountain ridges, the Santa Ynez Valley and the San Gabriel Mountains, and the Santa Monica Mountains. In September, the first wildfowl deaths were reported in the Santa Monica Mountains.
Officials are not disclosing which species was infected with the H5N1 virus.
The U.S. Geological Survey says the five bird flu cases reported in the county this year involved wild birds that were found dead.
According to the U.S. Geological Survey, five birds died in four separate areas, two in Red Hill, two in Red Wood, and one in Red Hill and Red Wood.
Officials say they are working with the federal agriculture and state agriculture departments, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Los Angeles County Animal Care and Control to track down the exact locations