After weeks of extensive testing of both commercial and backyard flocks within the surveillance zones established in Alabama, there has been no new detection of avian influenza. Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries John McMillan, in consultation with state veterinarian Dr. Tony Frazier, officially rescinds the Order Prohibiting Poultry Exhibitions and the Assembly of Poultry to be Sold in Alabama*. This means as of April 14, 2017, all poultry exhibitions, sales at fairs, festivals, swap meets, exotic sales and live bird markets, flea markets and auctions are allowed to resume their normal operating routines.
“We are quite confident the avian influenza threat is over. We are in the recovery phase at this time and are working to enhance our response capabilities should we face another outbreak in the future,” said Dr. Frazier.
Commissioner McMillan said, “We appreciate the cooperation of commercial poultry producers, backyard flock owners, industry representatives, department staff members, USDA personnel and so many others who went above and beyond. This situation was handled with professionalism and great dedication to the betterment of poultry in Alabama.”
Even though the disease threat has diminished, Dr. Frazier encourages commercial poultry producers and backyard flock owners to observe their birds closely and to be vigilant in practicing strict biosecurity measures. These include:
- Isolating poultry from other animals
- Wearing clothing designated for use only at the poultry house
- Minimizing access to people and sanitized equipment
- Keeping the area around the poultry buildings clean and uninviting to wild birds and animals
- Sanitizing the facility between flocks
- Cleaning equipment entering and leaving the farm
- Having an all-in, all-out policy regarding the placement and removal of the poultry
- Properly disposing of bedding material and mortalities
- Avoiding contact with migratory waterfowl
Dr. Frazier reminds all poultry owners and producers to strictly adhere to the biosecurity guidelines mentioned above. The ADAI (Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries) Poultry Division is available to answer any questions concerning poultry and should be notified at 334-240-6584 and/or USDA at 1-866-536-7593 if birds show unusual signs of disease (flu-like symptoms) or flocks experience unexplained mortalities.
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