An outbreak linked to Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) in dairy cattle in the southern U.S. is “likely a new disease,” according to Phillip Jardon, dairy veterinarian for Iowa State University (ISU) Extension and Outreach.

“Right now, the indication is it’s HPAI that is not adapted to cattle,” or not transmitting animal to animal and is spread from wild birds to cows, Jardon said during a Zoom meeting with Iowa agriculture officials March 26. “Viruses are really tricky little creatures,” he said. They adapt and change.

Initial reports of sickness in dairy cattle in north Texas, Kansas and New Mexico started circulating early last week.

So far, no cattle deaths have been linked to the outbreak, with cows...