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Showing posts from April, 2018

RESCHEDULED Backyard and Small Flock Poultry Workshop

SAINT PETER, Minn-- Minnesota's April blizzard forced the postponement of the poultry workshop scheduled in St. Peter, Minnesota last Saturday.  The event has been rescheduled for Saturday, April 28. 


Have you ever considered owning your own backyard chickens? Or do you already have a small flock and want to learn more about how to care for your feathered friends? Then join University of Minnesota Educators and Specialist for a day of poultry education on April 28th in St Peter, Minnesota.

Raising poultry on a small scale is gaining in popularity throughout all parts of Minnesota, but without access to education, many home producers are left scrambling to find answers to their questions. The Backyard and Small Flocks Workshop is designed to help start answering some of those questions.

The workshop will cover a range of poultry related topics including chicken breeds, poultry regulatory issues, poultry husbandry and nutrition, biosecurity, issues with raising poultry, and baby chicks…

Pens with partial slotted floors appear to offer advantages

We know that wet litter has a negative impact on turkeys. It can lead to footpad dermatitis, leg problems, diminished air quality, and it can allow avian influenza virus to survive for longer time periods.

Traditional strategies to remove moisture have some shortcomings. For instance, adding heat, tilling litter and/or adding dry bedding carry associated costs. Sharing tilling equipment between barns and hauling and distributing new bedding increases the risk of influenza introduction and spread.

Another potential strategy for improving litter condition and reducing disease challenge is to use slotted flooring (SF). Sally Noll, an Extension poultry specialist and professor in the Department of Animal Science, and Kevin Janni, an Extension agricultural engineer and professor in the Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering, collaborated to evaluate alternative flooring systems. The Jennie-O Turkey Store processing plant in Faribault helped collect data for the stu…

Improving biosecurity farm by farm

After the 2015 outbreak of avian influenza and 2013 outbreak of porcine epidemic diarrhea virus led to animal losses in the millions, University of Minnesota Extension educators hit the road to teach farmers and farm workers about the proper protocol involved in keeping diseases from spreading. Part of Extension’s mobile effort is the University of Minnesota Biosecure Entry Education Trailer (BEET), which was made possible by the state’s Rapid Agricultural Response Fund.

The trailer had one of its busiest years in 2017, reaching an estimated 179,000 people at large and small events. Extension poultry educator Abby Neu reports the trailer is a powerful demonstration tool for common sense, easy-to-implement procedures that can help safeguard a farm from future disease outbreaks. The fact that it can travel just about anywhere is a reason for its success.

The trailer is used by Extension’s poultry and swine teams, including Neu and Sarah Schieck, Extension swine educator. They w…

Secure Poultry Supply website provides valuable information

During a disease outbreak, USDA-ordered stopped movements can have consequences for uninfected farms near the outbreak. The Secure Poultry Supply (SPS) plan helps to avoid interruptions in the movement of animals or animal products during an outbreak of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI). The SPS focuses on premises with no evidence of infection and helps to assure there will be a continuous supply of safe and wholesome food to consumers. It also maintains business continuity for producers, transporters, and food processors through response planning.

Recently, the University of Minnesota launched the SPS website (securepoultrysupply.umn.edu). The SPS is a translation of the science in the Secure Egg (SES), Turkey (STS) and Broiler (SBS) Supply plans into a harmonized permitting approach. On the SPS website are permit guidances that contain strategies to limit the risk of poultry product movement, like biosecurity and testing, from farms without infection inside a Control Area. T…