October 22, 2021: Avian Influenza Season is Here

 

Waterfowl and shorebirds (known reservoirs of Avian Influenza) are migrating, and it is important to be vigilant to mitigate chances of Avian Influenza infection during this time. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

• Ensure your flock is biosecure: Review your biosecurity plan and make sure your employees do so as well. Refer to CDFA’s Commercial Poultry & Backyard Poultry Biosecurity pages and USDA’s Simple Wildlife Practices Factsheet.

• Know the signs of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza.

• Call your veterinarian at the first signs of illness, or if you do not have a regular veterinarian, call the Sick Bird Hotline 1-866-922-2473.

• Keep an eye on wild birds: Check the CDFW Avian Investigations webpage for further details, and to know when to call to report dead wild birds. You can also refer to the California Waterfowl Tracker to better assess the locations of waterfowl relative to poultry farms.

We have had four introductions of Low Pathogenic Avian Influenza this year in California in domestic poultry.  All were spillovers from wildlife, two of them in October. Every farm carries a unique risk and, in some instances, poultry cannot be separated from wild birds; but where possible, we recommend separation through next May.  We do not want to repeat 2014/15!