Minn. State Fair cancels poultry shows due to bird flu

Published 3:06 pm Saturday, May 16, 2015

ST. PAUL — All poultry shows have been canceled at the Minnesota State Fair and county fairs across the state this year as authorities try to stop the spread of bird flu.

The Minnesota Board of Animal Health is also prohibiting birds from being included in swap meets, exotic animal sales and petting zoos.

Dr. Beth Thompson, the board’s assistant director, said in a statement Friday that the state needs to do everything possible to get rid of this virus, and preventing the commingling of birds from different farms is one way to do that.

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As of Thursday, 87 Minnesota turkey and chicken farms had been hit by confirmed or presumed outbreaks of the H5N2 avian influenza virus, which has cost the state’s producers around 5.8 million birds.