HPAI has now been detected in 24 states
Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza has been identified in 26 total locations in 24 states according to a tabulation of reports from the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Information Service. Among these are seven cases involving commercial flocks.
There have been confirmed HPAI cases in wild migratory birds in Georgia, but no cases of HPAI have been identified in Georgia commercial or backyard flocks as of April 6, according to state veterinarian Janemarie Hennebelle.
Georgia is located in the Atlantic Flyway – one of four major north-south routes migrating birds take over North America – where HPAI has been detected in six states, including commercial flocks in Delaware, Maryland and North Carolina.
In mid-February, the Georgia Department of Agriculture ordered suspension of all exhibitions, shows, sales (flea markets, auction markets), swaps, and meets pertaining to poultry and feathered fowl in Georgia until further notice. Notifications will be announced when listed activities can resume in Georgia.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the recent HPAI detections in birds do not present an immediate public health concern. No human cases of these avian influenza viruses have been detected in the United States. As a reminder, the proper handling and cooking of poultry and eggs to an internal temperature of 165 ˚F kills bacteria and viruses.
Good biosecurity practices are the best defense against AI infection and poultry producers must take the following measures to protect their flocks:
• Move all poultry with outside access indoors.
• Implement strict biosecurity.
• Monitor flocks for clinical signs consistent with AI.
• With HPAI, birds may become quiet, not eat and drink, have diarrhea, and have discolored combs and feet. Birds may also die suddenly with no signs of disease.
• Report any concerns to your veterinarian, state animal health official or federal animal health official immediately.
Avian Influenza is a reportable disease in Georgia. If you have concerns about AI in birds, call the Georgia Avian Influenza hotline at (770) 766-6850 or visit https://www.gapoultrylab.org/avian-influenza-hotline/.
Biosecurity and other resources: