By GINO LORENZONI
Poultry producers and hobbyists should be aware that Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) has been detected in commercial poultry flocks, small/backyard hobby flocks, and in migratory birds in the United States. The USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has reported 1,190 H5N1 HPAI positive wild birds in all states across the East coast. In addition, thirty-five states (Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming) have confirmed H5N1 HPAI in commercial and backyard flocks. The most recent HPAI outbreak (May 22, 2022) was confirmed on a turkey farm in Dakota County, Minnesota. In Pennsylvania, HPAI has been detected in commercial poultry in Lancaster and Berks Counties.
It is critical that all poultry owners, regardless of flock size, take appropriate biosecurity precautions. Now is the time to revisit your biosecurity plan. If you do not have a biosecurity plan, it’s not too late to start. Preventing the introduction and spread of this devastating disease is essential. While you are working on your biosecurity plan, here are a few key biosecurity practices to implement immediately:
Source : psu.edu
- Keep your poultry away from other birds.
- Immediately clean up feed spills to discourage wild birds on your premises.
- Limit visitors to only those essential for business. Make sure all visitors follow your biosecurity plan.
- Wear dedicated footwear and clothing while servicing your poultry. Sanitize boots, hands, and tools before entering your flock premises.
- Do not visit other premises with birds. However, if it is necessary to do so, shower and change clothes and shoes before returning to your flock.
- Do not share tools and equipment with other bird owners.