Ten submitted mink samples all returned positive for the coronavirus, the Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) said in a press release on Friday. The farm has been placed in quarantine, which means “no animal or animal product may leave the farm until further notice,” according to the ODA.
The farmer and his staff have been urged to self-isolate after several cases of coronavirus were reported among farm workers, the statement said.
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“We have been engaged with the Oregon mink industry for some time, providing information on biosafety to prevent the introduction of SARS-CoV-2 and we were ready to respond,” said the veterinarian at the ‘ODA, Dr. Ryan Scholz, to CNN.
“The farmer did the right thing by reporting his symptoms early on and is now working with us and the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) to take care of his animals and staff. virus, but that could change as the virus progresses. “
A team of public health veterinarians are working with those affected by the outbreak by ensuring that staff have the personal protective equipment and supplies needed to follow coronavirus guidelines, according to the OHA.
“Worker safety is essential to protect people and animals in mink farms,” said Dr. Emilio DeBess, OHA public health veterinarian. “Our best weapon against the virus right now is education. We provide specific testing, counseling and support in the workplace, and provide additional PPE to farmers, employees and their families to help to reduce the spread of the virus. “
This year, the virus was detected in mink in seven countries, including the Netherlands, Denmark, Italy, Sweden and Spain, and three US states, Utah, Michigan and Wisconsin, according to the ODA.
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Thousands of mink have died on fur farms in Utah and Wisconsin after a series of coronavirus outbreaks. In Utah, ranchers have lost at least 8,000 mink to Covid-19.
There is currently no evidence that animals, including mink, play a significant role in transmitting the virus to humans, according to the CDC and the US Department of Agriculture. The risk of animals transmitting Covid-19 to humans is considered low.
The USDA announces confirmed cases of the coronavirus in animals whenever it is found in a new species. All confirmed cases in animals are posted on the department’s website.
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