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Showing posts from March, 2022

Highly pathogenic avian influenza for noncommercial poultry flock owners

By Wayne Martin, Extension Educator, Alternative Livestock and Abby Schuft, Extension Educator, Poultry History of avian influenza Researchers found highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in 1878. They discerned it from other poultry diseases that shared a high death rate. Current evidence suggests that HPAI changed over time. Strains before 1996 had a low risk of causing disease. Later, strains appeared more often and affected millions of chickens and other poultry. HPAI Outbreak of 2014 – 2015 In 2014 – 2015, HPAI hit North America, which led to the loss of almost 50 million chickens and turkeys. The outbreak began on the west coast and moved through British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, and California. Highly pathogenic avian influenza affected only one commercial flock on the west coast. The other cases occurred in what were considered “backyard” poultry flocks, which included a pheasant farm with over 5,000 birds. Highly pathogenic avian influenza arrived in the Midwest in Mar