State officials expand bird flu poultry restrictions

The state veterinarian has broadened the restriction against poultry gatherings in a modified order that now prohibits all poultry at any swap meet in the state through the end of 2015. A previous order issued June 10 prohibited swap meets held in conjunction with a county, regional or state fair.

“As long as avian influenza is still potentially in the environment, we need to better manage the gathering of birds to ensure that we are not spreading the virus to new areas of the state,” said Dr. Paul Mc- Graw, Wisconsin state veterinarian.

This action is intended to prevent any further spread of H5N2 avian influenza. Wisconsin had its first confirmation of the disease on April 13 and its last on May 4. The decision was made after careful consideration and consultation with representatives from the poultry industry, show coordinators and fair organizers.

“We realize this will be a challenge to some who rely on swap meets to sell their birds, but this is necessary to protect all poultry owners in Wisconsin,” McGraw said. “It is still acceptable to advertise birds for sale and sell them privately directly from an owner’s farm.”

All bird owners, whether commercial producers or backyard enthusiasts, need to continue practicing good biosecurity, preventing contact between their birds and wild birds, and reporting sick birds or unusual bird deaths to your veterinarian and the DATCP’s Animal Health division at 1-800-572-8981.

Additional information and resources concerning avian influenza can be found on DATCP’s web site at datcp.wi.gov.


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