Due to the recent outbreak of H5N1 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI), AERC cannot currently see the following types of birds as patients: barnyard fowl and wild birds (including chickens, turkeys, ducks, and ravens). For now, we will still see companion parrot species as patients.

To prevent the spread of this virus, please practice strict hygiene regarding your birds: washing hands and changing clothes before and after interacting with them. Do not allow your pet birds to come in contact with wildlife or outside visitors.

If you have wild bird feeders and barnyard fowl, move feeders away from your flock. Wear rubber boots and gloves to fill feeders and don’t allow boots or gloves near pet birds or poultry.

The Centers for Disease Control has announced that this strain of avian influenza is a low risk to the public.

Symptoms of HPAI include:

  • Sudden death without any clinical signs
  • Lethargy
  • Lack of appetite
  • Decrease in egg production
  • Soft- or thin-shelled or misshapen eggs
  • Swelling of the head, eyelids, comb, wattles, and hocks
  • Purple discoloration of the wattles, comb, and legs
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Coughing, sneezing, and/or runny nose
  • Uncoordination
  • Diarrhea

Call your veterinarian if members of your flock suddenly die or become sick. If you have biosecurity concerns/questions or your birds are showing multiples of the symptoms listed above, please call the Minnesota Board of Animal Health at 1-833-454-0156. If you see dead wild birds or waterfowl in groups of five or more, please call the Department of Natural Resources at 1-888-646-6367.

We appreciate your understanding. This announcement will be taken down once we can safely resume seeing these patients.