The Iowa Department of Agriculture is prepping for a potential avian influenza outbreak by recommending producers continue and improve biosecurity efforts. High pathogenic avian influenza was confirmed recently in Tennessee, and two outbreaks of low pathogenic avian influenza were confirmed in Tennessee and Wisconsin. Highly pathogenic avian influenza virus strains are extremely infectious, often fatal to domestic poultry, and can spread rapidly from flock-to-flock. Low pathogenic avian influenza virus strains occur naturally in wild migratory waterfowl and shorebirds without causing illness. Low-path influenza can occur in domestic poultry, with little or no signs of illness. Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey says his state “saw firsthand” the devastation of HPAI in 2015. Northey says Iowa turkey, egg and broiler farmers have updated their biosecurity measures and made significant investments to help prevent the disease from getting on their farm. He stresses that all poultry farms need to have a biosecurity plan to qualify for USDA indemnification.
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