By Associated Press - Friday, April 24, 2015

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - Bird flu is ravaging the Midwest, and federal experts say it could spread to the Northeast if birds in the Atlantic flyway become infected with a highly contagious strain.

Chief veterinary officer John Clifford of the U.S. Department of Agriculture says a strain of the influenza has been found along the Pacific, Central and Mississippi River flyways. He says the disease could be carried eastward by such migratory birds as wild geese and ducks as they head for northern breeding grounds over the summer and expose more birds to the disease.

Clifford says it’s possible the virus could spread to the Atlantic flyway by fall.

The H5N2 virus has already cost Midwest turkey and chicken producers over 7 million birds since early March.

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