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Why are animal rights protesters targeting NBA games

Actions taken to stop the spread of bird flu are behind the unusual protests.

HOUSTON — Why are protesters targeting NBA games?

You may have noticed animal rights activists protesting at recent Minnesota Timberwolves games. One was caught trying to glue themselves to the court. Another dressed as an NBA official tried to storm the hardwood.

The protests can actually be traced back to the spread of avian flu right now in the U.S.

The current owner of the Timberwolves, Glen Taylor, also owns a factory egg farm in Iowa. Avian flu is spreading through similar operations and it's forcing owners to kill entire flocks of chickens. This strain of the bird flu, H5N1, is highly infectious and is deadly to birds.

The majority of the chickens being killed to stop the spread are egg-laying hens, and the move is causing the price of eggs to spike. The animal activists are accusing Taylor’s farm of killing over five million chickens due to an outbreak.

H5N1 has shown up in Texas but so far, no large chicken operations have been affected.

Agriculture experts in the state are warning commercial operators and owners of backyard chickens to be on guard against this virulent strain. Since migratory birds are helping spread the disease, homeowners with chickens are being told to try and keep wild birds away from their yards. That means no bird feeders and to clean thoroughly if you come in contact with wild birds.

While humans can spread the bird flu the risk to the general public’s health is low.

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