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Search for Wall Street Journal reporter missing in New Jersey

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A search is under way for a Wall Street Journal reporter missing for nearly a week after telling his wife he was taking a short walk, New Jersey authorities said on Thursday.

David Bird, 55, an energy markets reporter at the Journal, published by News Corp, was recovering from a gastrointestinal virus when he was last seen on Saturday afternoon at his home in Long Hill Township, New Jersey, according to the newspaper.

Bird told his wife, Nancy, that he needed some fresh air, according to the Journal's account.

He put on a red jacket with a yellow zipper and headed out, leaving his cell phone behind. He has not been seen since.

County and state agencies have joined the Long Hill Township Police Department, combing woods near his home, flying over the area in helicopters and using divers to search the Passaic River and other nearby bodies of water, according to updates on the police department's Facebook page.

Bird, who has two children, has worked for Dow Jones, a News Corp subsidiary, for 20 years. He also has worked for the Trenton Times and the Associated Press, the Journal said.

"Mr. Bird is a longtime member of the Dow Jones newsroom," Gerard Baker, editor in chief of Dow Jones and managing editor of the Journal, said in a statement. "Our thoughts are with his family and we are working with the Long Hill Township Police Department as they continue their search."

Bird has had a liver transplant, police said, and is believed to be without the medicine he needs to take regularly.

(Reporting by Jonathan Allen; Editing by Ellen Wulfhorst and Gunna Dickson)

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