In late 2014, 2015 and January 2016 (in Indiana), USDA confirmed cases of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) H5 in the Pacific, Central and Mississippi Flyways (migratory paths for birds). The disease has been found in wild birds, as well as in backyard and commercial flocks. There are four important things that you need to know about this situation:
1. The United States food supply is safe. Our food is safe, the United States has the strongest Avian Influenza (AI) surveillance system in the world.
2. The risk to humans is low. No human infections with these viruses have been detected, and the Centers for Disease Control considers the risk to people from the High Path Avian Influenza infections in wild birds, backyard flocks, and commerical poultry to be low.
3. Indiana has a team approach to deal with Avian Influenza. The Indiana State Poultry Association, the Indiana Board of Animal Health, the Purdue Animal Disease Diagnostic Lab, and USDA-APHIS work together with the National Poultry Improvement Plan. These agencies and the NPIP look for the disease, educate the public about AI, and help producers decide on the most appropriate practices to ensure the health and safety of their flock.
4. Biosecurity is of utmost importance to help prevent AI. Avian Influenza was first detected in backyard flocks in the Northwest, and has spread to commerical flocks. The virus is specific to the bird, not the type of housing. A high standard of biosecurity can help prevent the spread of Avian Influenza. Wild birds are carriers of AI and can carry this disease without any symptoms.
For more information on HPAI in Indiana during an outbreak the latest information can be found on the Indiana Board of Animal Health's website. CLICK HERE to visit their website.
For more information on HPAI in the United States, visit the USDA-APHIS-VS website here.
LINKS AND RESOURCES
Biosecurity for the Birds Website - USDA - Discover how to keep your backyard and pet birds healthy, as well as learn about biosecurity through handouts, word games, and videos.
Biosecurity Guide for the Poultry & Bird Owner - The essential guide for all pet and poultry owners, this guide provides detailed information on every aspect. If you read only one thing, let it be this!
Backyard Biosecurity Poster - Print this poster out, and hang it around your poultry! This announcement reminds the flock care-takers of the simple steps needed to prevent poultry diseases.
Footbaths - A simple form of biosecurity - "A footbath is a very simple form of biosecurity that helps prevent the potential spread of disease." Read this document for information on this simple and effective biosecurity practice.
Vaccination of Small Poultry Flocks - Deciding if, when and how vaccination is right for your birds is an important management decision. In this publication, pros, cons and procedures are covered.
Controlling Poultry Pests - Prevent and treat insects, lice and mites and learn what treatments are most effective in this publication.
Rodent Control in the Poultry House - Rats and mice are carriers of disease and can be a significant problem for the poultry producer. This article offer tips on prevention and treatment of this common problem.
Indiana Poultry Emergency Disease Response Fact Sheet - An important read for any poultry owner, as Indiana strives to have all flock owners raise healthy, happy birds.
Avian Influenza Disease Alert - A publication from the Indiana State Board of Animal Health, this answers many questions an Indiana flock owner may have and discusses important considerations for disease control.
Exotic Newcastle Disease (END) Alert - Exotic Newcastle disease (END) is a contagious, highly fatal, viral disease affecting all species of birds. Learn how to prevent it, and recognize the signs. Enfermedad Exótica de Newcastle (END) es una enfermedad contagiosa, viral altamente mortal que afecta a todas las especies de aves. Aprender a prevenir y reconocer los signos de este documento.