Iowa farm says 3.8 million chickens must be killed due to virus, down from earlier estimate

The number of chickens at a northwest Iowa farm that will need to be killed because of the bird flu virus has been reduced to 3.8 million.

Sunrise Farms announced Tuesday that it houses 3.8 million laying hens, all of which will need to be killed after a routine test confirmed the virus in the flock. That's less than the 5.3 million that government officials had estimated Monday.

The chickens will be killed and composted on the farm as part of the containment process.

The Iowa infection is the latest to hit eight Midwestern states, where the virus is dooming about 6.3 million chickens and turkeys.

The virus is deadly for birds, but appears to be little risk to people.