Newly detected 'bird flu' cases impacting Central Florida tourist attractions

The Marine Science Center in Ponce Inlet has closed down its bird exhibits after three water birds tested positive for avian influenza, or "bird flu."

Chad Macfie who works at the county-run center said the birds were removed before they were able to interact with resident birds. 

Now signs are up around the facility letting guests know the bird exhibits are closed. It comes a day after the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) announced cases of bird flu have been detected in Central Florida.

"It was under the recommendation of the FWC and the State of Florida that we stop admitting birds into the hospital and that also we close down our bird exhibits to the public," he said.

RELATED: FWC investigating new strain of avian flu in wild birds in Central Florida

The center had already been on high alert after reports of bird flu in other Florida counties like Brevard. 

In fact, the Brevard Zoo closed down some of its bird exhibits there too after two vultures found on property tested positive. 

"We have the walk-through areas for feeding the lorikeets and feeding the cockatiels. We’ve closed those areas to guests at this time, and we’re also limiting keeper interaction with the birds as well," said Trevor Zachairah.

Macfie said there haven’t been any reported cases of Avian flu in humans. Still, though, the center is taking extra precautions to protect guests and staff. 

"The FWC is recommending to not touch or handle injured birds or sick birds at this time," he said. 

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