Avian Influenza, commonly known as AI or the "bird flu," is an infectious disease found in birds caused by type A strains of the influenza virus. There are two major types of AI -- High Path (HPAI) and Low Path (LPAI). LPAI usually shows no sign of infections or even minor symptoms and is generally non-lethal. HPAI has many symptoms, is highly transmissible, and has a high mortality rate.
In the United States, there have not been a significant number of reported HPAI cases since 2015. As of January 13, 2022, positive cases of HPAI have been found in the states in wild birds. As of 2/8/2022, HPAI was found in a commercial turkey flock in Indiana. It's important to take HPAI very seriously due to its high transmissibility and mortality rate. This page will cover news and current updates to the spread of HPAI in the states and how it may affect ownership and flock management.
Biosecurity is your #1 line of defense.
Yes. Meyer Hatchery is a member of the National Poultry Improvement Plan (NPIP). Our NPIP number is 31-184 and our status is U.S. Pullorum-Typhoid Clean w/added classification -- H5/H7 AI Clean and Salmonella Monitored. AI is not transmissible from a mother hen to chicks in eggs.
You can view a running list of state precautionary requirements due to Avian Influenza here.
Sudden death; purple combs, wattles, legs, or feet; loss of appetite, energy, and egg production; coughing; sneezing; nasal discharge; diarrhea; and soft or misshapen eggs. There is no cure or vaccine for AI.
The APHIS (Animals and Plant Health Inspection Service with the US Department of Agriculture) website is posting updates to Commercial and Backyard Flocks as well as Detections found in Wild Birds. Additionally, follow the Department of Agriculture in your state for local updates.
Meyer Hatchery takes great care to ensure that our breeding flock barns, hatching facility, and retail spaces have strict biosecurity practices in place to help us all prevent the spread of many communicable diseases that could affect our poultry and ultimately, possibly even ourselves. We use footbaths, designated boots for each barn, limited access to only essential personnel, vehicle sanitization, and more on the properties. We work with our state vet to make sure we are utilizing the best practices known. We sanitize eggs, hatching rooms, all contact surfaces, and equipment daily and again on hatch day. For our retail space, we maintain footbaths at all entrances and keep contact areas cleaned regularly. We also appreciate your understanding that no outside animals are permitted in the store or on the property!
If you suspected your birds are infected, call your local cooperative extension office, your veterinarian, state veterinarian, or state animal/poultry diagnostic laboratory. Or call USDA toll-free at 1-866-536-7593 and they will put you in touch with a local contact who can help you.
EPA’s Registered Disinfectants Products Effective Against Avian Influenza
DIY Footbath Article with Video Link
Biosecurity for your Backyard Flock
Meyer Hatchery's Biosecurity Best Practices
Ohio Department of Agriculture