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Is it OK to leave up bird feeders as avian flu outbreak reaches Oregon? Experts weigh in – OregonLive

It's OK to leave up bird feeders during avian flu outbreak, according to experts.Photo by Chris Branam
CORVALLIS – With the current outbreak of avian flu, wild bird enthusiasts wonder if they should take down backyard feeders. Since songbirds very rarely catch the illness, experts say there is no need.
“Currently veterinarians tell us there is very low risk to native songbirds from the highly pathogenic avian influenza strain,” said Dana Sanchez, Oregon State University Extension Service wildlife specialist. “At this time there is no official recommendation to take down wild bird feeders. We still recommend that everyone practice good everyday hygiene for the wild birds by regularly cleaning feeders and birdbaths because of salmonella, mold and the ‘everyday’ health concerns that we can combat with regular cleaning of surfaces that get a lot of use.”
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