BOULDER COUNTY, Colo. (KDVR) — A quarantine order was issued for an expanse of Boulder County after bird flu was detected among backyard poultry.

The highly pathogenic avian influenza was detected on Friday, according to a news release from Boulder County Public Health. The quarantine order applies to all poultry and poultry products in the area and includes much of the southeast part of the county, including Niwot, Erie, Lafayette, Louisville, Superior and Boulder.

Bird owners, including those with backyard flocks, are asked to increase their biosecurity practices.

“Suggested actions include keeping a closed flock, decreasing interactions between domestic and wild birds and keeping feed away from wild birds,” the county said.

Signs of highly pathogenic avian influenza include:

  • Sudden death without clinical signs
  • Lack of energy or appetite
  • Decreased egg production
  • Soft‐shelled or misshapen eggs
  • Swelling or purple discoloration of head, eyelids, comb, hocks
  • Nasal discharge
  • Coughing or sneezing
  • Lack of coordination
  • Diarrhea

Bird flu emergency declared in Colorado

This is the second bird flu outbreak in Colorado in recent weeks. In September, bird flu was detected at a Weld County commercial egg facility with around 1.15 million laying hens. A quarantine area remains in effect for a stretch of the country along U.S. 85 from Ione to Gilcrest.

The September outbreak prompted Gov. Jared Polis to declare a state of disaster emergency over the virus. The executive order resurrects a declaration first issued on April 29 as the virus spread among birds in the state. It expired on July 25 as the spread slowed.

The virus was first detected among wild birds in Colorado on March 24 and in domestic poultry on April 8, according to the governor’s order. As of Thursday, it had been detected in 19 of the state’s 64 counties, with cases found in wild, domestic and commercial flocks.

That includes impacts on 58,000 birds at a commercial broiler breeder facility in Montrose County, along with another 1.4 million birds and 7 million eggs at a commercial egg facility in Weld County. Both of those detections were in April.