JEFFERSON COUNTY, Wisc. — Depopulation efforts were completed Wednesday at the Jefferson County egg farm following an outbreak of the highly pathogenic avian influenza.
The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP), in coordination with its local, state and federal partners, has begun compost disposal at a nearby site, officials said in a statement.
Earlier this month, the USDA confirmed positive cases of the virus at Cold Spring Egg Farm, which is owned by S&R Egg Farms, Inc.
According to the county, the farm began "depopulating" its entire stock of layers on March 16. In the following days, it began to compost some of the birds.
The state and county said composting is the most environmentally friendly way to dispose of the carcasses. They used the same method in 2015 during a previous outbreak in Jefferson County, one of the largest egg producers in the United States.
Cold Spring owns land about six miles away. After a site inspection, federal, state and local officials determined it was safe to compost the bulk of the birds at that second location, which is an empty field near the intersection of Hooper and Zion Roads.
According to the county, before composition began at the Hooper and Zion site, the county said it would make sure that residents were supplied with test kits.
Anyone with questions can visit DATCP's frequently asked questions page or can contact our avian influenza response line at (608) 224-4902. Messages are monitored daily from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.