As of this week, 938 people will be infected with salmonella in 2020. Cases have almost doubled in the last month – 473 people have gone since the last case report in June, the CDC said.
The presumed culprit in this outbreak is poultry. Public health officials interviewed more than 400 people with salmonella, 74% of whom said they had contact with chickens and ducks.
Since the first disease was reported in January, the CDC said 15 outbreaks have been identified at various stages. So far, three of them, found in Kentucky and Oregon, have been tied to poultry and their coops.
The CDC did not specify why more people became infected in 2020 than in years past. Its timeline of reported cases shows that cases began to rise in late March (cases typically rose in the spring, when poultry farming is most popular, the CDC said).
Chicks and ducks can carry salmonella in their digestive tract, which is harmless but can cause diarrhea, fever and cramps in humans who are exposed to bacteria on bird feathers or eggs or in their feces.
CNN’s Jen Christensen contributed to this report.