December 15, 2008
Bird flu found in Rhode Island duck
A Rhode Island state veterinarian said a duck shot by a hunter in Johnston last month has tested positive for bird flu.
The state Department of Environmental Management said the bird flu virus detected in the duck can infect other birds, but cannot be transmitted to humans.
Officials are asking hunters and poultry farmers to keep an eye out for birds that appear ill. Poultry farmers may notice some of their fowl with respiratory illnesses or a drop in egg production.
Veterinarian Scott Marshall said the H5N1 strain appears to be nonfatal, but there is concern it could mutate into fatal form for birds.