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SAN DIEGO (CNS) – An outbreak of bird flu elsewhere in the U.S., but which is spreading, has prompted the San Diego Zoo and Safari Park to begin preparing for an outbreak.

The HAN1 avian flu initially appeared in North Carolina and has since broken out in more than half the states in the country, spreading as far west as Utah and resulting in the killing of 27 million turkeys, chickens and other birds, according to federal officials, who said this week that two zoos have reported the virus in their bird collections. They would not disclose which zoos those were.

The San Diego Zoo and Safari Park has 3,700 birds in their care.

Rob Vernon, a spokesman for the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, said in a public statement that a full response will be in effect for “at least the next few months, until transmission subsides.”

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