Avian Influenza Hits Ontario

It has happened.  The event that poultry vets, suppliers, farmers and supporting industries have been preparing for and dreading for years….Avian Influenza has been isolated in Ontario.  As you can imagine, this is a very busy time for those of us in the industry, putting in control measures, routing deliveries, sampling to identify any other flocks, and implementing our emergency procedures.  We are working closely (and surprisingly well) with govornments at the provincial and national levels to minimize the impact and the number of birds affected.  This virus is also a risk for backyard and hobby farmers as well.  Ironically, we had produced an information sheet on Avian Influenza for small flocks because of the prevalence in the US, and concerns it might come here…..well….here it is…OAHN poultry small flock PRODUCER REPORT avian flu FINAL

This is an information sheet with some useful stuff for small flocks.  It will be valuable for anyone in any area where avian influenza is present.  Our group will also be developing a webinar for small flocks in the next little while, to help you develop a strategy to keep your birds safe.  Feel free to share this with anyone who might find it useful.  I will try to keep you updated as I can on things that may be useful to you.

If only they'd keep the darn things ON!

Mike the Chicken Vet

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10 responses to “Avian Influenza Hits Ontario

  1. RAN Farm Zen Goats

    Thank you for keeping us apprised of this situation. Living in Oregon and being a small flock farmer, I can do my part in the U.S. Keep up your good work.

  2. I’m in South Dakota, and it’s been detected at a commercial turkey operation here. They are blaming migrating water fowl from what I understand. Do you think the migrating birds pose much risk for my backyard flock? They don’t land anywhere close by, just fly over at great heights. Just curious.

    • Hi Julie,

      I DO worry about migratory birds. They have been shown to carry the virus without too much affect on themselves, and this version of Avian Influenza seems to be pretty tough, and able to live in the environment for a long time (up to weeks). If possible, I would try to keep your hens away from where waterfowl could “share” their manure.

      Mike

  3. Thank you!

  4. I’m confused about the role of songbirds vs. migratory waterfowl in the spread of AI. Could you expound? Thanks!

    • Hi Carol,

      Avian influenza is strongly associated with waterfowl, and is adapted to these species. As far as I know, songbirds have very little to do with the spread of the disease, although they can be affected.

      Mike

      • Thanks for the quick reply, Mike. I would assume a songbird could get sick and die from AI like poultry, though, and would it be able to spread it to poultry in the interim? I know they find AI in birds of prey that have eaten infected waterfowl– is it just less likely that a songbird would come in contact with the waterfowl? Thanks again…

  5. Oh. NO. Thanks for sharing the information link, Mike. Best wishes to you and your peeps in Ontario. Scary times.

  6. I live in Minnesota, in a county bordering Stearns where 4 sites have been identified. I am worried for my flock and am keeping a close eye on new defelopments. Thank you for the information you post on this situation!

  7. theartofdoingstuff

    Thanks for the information Mike. Being in Dundas, that’s a little too close for comfort for me. ~ karen

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