Which states lost the most birds to avian flu in 2023?

Six states had more than 1 million birds affected by HPAI during the past year, but it was Ohio that lost the most.

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The number of birds to lost to highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in 2023 was much less severe in 2023 than it was during the previous year, going from approximately 57.6 million birds to about 21.5 million.

The number of states to lose birds to HPAI also declined. However, 21 states still had commercial operations affected.

According to information provided by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), this is how the states ranked in terms of birds lost:

1. Ohio

Ohio lost more birds to HPAI in 2023 than any other state, with a total of 6,085,600. These losses occurred among six flock infections. Three of those flocks had more than 1 million birds involved, with the largest of those including more than 2.6 million laying hens. One year ago, Ohio lost about 3.75 million birds to HPAI.

2. California

With 4,528,100 birds affected by HPAI, California ranked second nationally in terms of bird losses in 2023. This is a sharp increase when compared to 2022, when the state lost 707,000 birds. Of the 21 commercial flocks affected by HPAI during 2023, the largest of those involved 1,358,600 laying hens.

3. Iowa

Iowa, which lost more birds to HPAI in 2022, had a better year in 2023. During the most recent year, the state lost 2,894,200 birds, compared to more than 15.9 million in 2022. Two of the flocks lost in 2023 involved more than 1 million birds, with the largest involving 1.6 million.

4. Minnesota

Minnesota lost 2,118,300 head of commercial poultry in 2023. It had 34 flocks affected during the year, most of which involved turkeys. The state’s lone layer flock affected included 940,000 hens.

5. Kansas

With five flocks affected by HPAI in 2023, Kansas lost 1,532,800 birds in 2023. The largest of the state’s affected flocks involved 800,000 birds. During the previous year, Kansas only lost 6,900 commercial birds.

6. South Dakota

While South Dakota had more flocks affected by HPAI than any other state in 2023, it ranked sixth in terms of bird losses at 1,353,620. That is a meaningful drop from 2022, when South Dakota lost nearly 4 million birds. The state’s largest flock lost during 2023 involved 78,200 commercial meat turkeys.

7. Oregon

Oregon did not have any losses of commercial poultry in 2022, but in 2023 it lost two flocks, which collectively amounted to 754,200 birds. Both were commercial broiler flocks.

8. Alabama

Alabama also lost two flocks to HPAI in 2023, with bird losses amounting to 354,400. The larger of the two affected flocks was an upland gamebird operation, which involved 306,500 birds. The other flock included broiler breeder pullets. Alabama did not have any HPAI cases in commercial operations in 2022.

9. Wisconsin

Wisconsin had 307,300 birds affected by HPAI in 2023, and all of those were commercial meat turkeys. The state’s HPAI bird losses were much more severe in 2022, when about 3.3 million birds were lost.

10. Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania lost 298,100 commercial birds in 2023 among seven commercial flocks. Two of the affected flocks involved in the vicinity of 98,000 birds – one of those was a commercial broiler operation and the other was a commercial upland gamebird operation. Pennsylvania’s HPAI bird losses in 2022 were also much more severe, with close to 4.4 million birds lost.

11. Tennessee

Tennessee lost 267,800 head of commercial poultry in 2023 when a single broiler operation was struck by HPAI. By contrast, the state lost 83,500 birds in three flock infections in 2022.

12. Arkansas

Arkansas’ commercial poultry losses to HPAI in 2023 amounted to 255,100 birds among four flocks that involved broilers, broiler breeder pullets and meat turkeys.

13. Maryland

In one single flock infection in a commercial broiler operation, Maryland’s bird losses in 2023 amounted to 192,900.

14. North Dakota

North Dakota lost three commercial meat turkey flocks in 2023, and those three flocks collectively amounted to 143,900 birds.

15. Utah

With two flock infections in 2023, Utah lost 141,800 commercial birds in 2023, all of which were meat turkeys. During the previous year, the state lost more than 2.2 million birds.

16. Mississippi

With one commercial broiler flock affected by HPAI, Mississippi lost 89,800 chickens in 2023.

17. Michigan

Michigan’s commercial poultry losses of 2023 amounted to 78,900 commercial meat turkeys. Two flocks were affected.

18. Missouri

Missouri lost 45,900 head of commercial poultry to HPAI in 2023. The virus struck on commercial meat turkey flock and one commercial broiler breeder flock.

19. Virginia

All of Virginia’s HPAI infections in commercial operations in 2023 involved commercial meat turkeys. Two flocks that collectively included 36,400 turkeys were affected.

20. Georgia

Georgia’s only HPAI infection in a commercial operation in 2023 was a commercial upland gamebird operation. Affected were 30,000 birds.

21. Illinois

Of the states that lost commercial poultry to HPAI in 2023, Illinois lost the fewest birds. The state’s single farm infection of the year involved a flock of 18,200 commercial meat turkeys.

A similar article about how states ranked in terms of HPAI flock losses appears on WATTPoultry.com.

To learn more about HPAI cases in commercial poultry flocks in the United States, Mexico and Canada, see an interactive map on WATTPoultry.com.   

View our continuing coverage of the global avian influenza situation

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