Maryland Zoo closes airline, moves birds indoors to fight bird flu – CBS Baltimore

BALTIMORE (WJZ) – Drop by the Maryland Zoo sometime and you’ll likely notice a noticeable change: some birds have disappeared from their habitats.

The zoo announced Tuesday that it has temporarily closed the aviary and that staff have brought some of the birds backstage, precautions the zoo is taking to protect its feathered residents. I am free from avian flu.

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Although no birds in the zoo have shown symptoms of avian influenza, cases of the highly contagious disease have been reported in birds and flocks across the country, including here in Maryland.

“We have taken these steps with a great deal of care to limit contact between migratory wild birds, which can spread avian influenza, and the collection of rare birds at risk. our extinction,” said Maryland Zoo President and CEO, Kirby Fowler.

In addition, the zoo is limiting the number of staff members that come into direct contact with its bird population, and they have put in place special handling and sanitation measures to address this.

These precautions are part of the zoo’s multi-layered response to avian influenza, an action plan that has been examined by the United States Department of Agriculture and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources and other agencies.

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“Moving birds out of habitat is not unique to the Maryland Zoo,” says Fowler. “Colleagues around the country are taking similar measures.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, bird flu is commonly spread by wild birds through their saliva, mucus, and feces.

While some birds may not get sick from these naturally occurring viruses, the CDC says they can cause serious illness and death when encountered with other species.

While it is very rare to infect humans, it can happen when we come into contact with droplets or particles of the virus in the air, or if we touch a contaminated surface and then, the agency said. that touches his face.

So what does this mean for zoo visitors, such as you?

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You won’t find your favorite penguins or flamingos roaming around in their cages, and all birds raised in outdoor habitats have been moved indoors. Maryland Zoo closes airline, moves birds indoors to fight bird flu – CBS Baltimore

Jake Nichol

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