According to the Pennsylvania Agricultural Service, highly pathogenic avian influenza was detected in a herd of commercial flock on three Pennsylvania farms in Lancaster County.
As of Saturday, there are no signs of bird flu on the valley farm.
According to the latest Farm Survey by the Department of State (2017), there are 59 farms in Montour County, 134 farms in Northumberland County, 263 farms in Snyder County and 180 farms in Union County.
There are 10,361 poultry businesses throughout the state.
According to the Ministry of Agriculture, the state’s poultry industry is worth more than $ 7 billion.
“I know what’s happening in Lancaster County and I’m taking precautions here,” said Johann Mueller, a poultry breeder in the Beavertown area. “We have restricted access to the flock and are always on the alert. This is a very serious continuation.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the detection of bird flu does not represent an urgent public health concern. No human cases of avian influenza virus have been detected in the United States. A state and federal inter-ministerial task force will be prepared and a response plan will begin.
Bird flu is not a risk to the general public, but it is highly contagious and can be fatal to poultry (chickens, ducks, geese, quails, pheasants, guinea fowls, turkeys), the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture said on Friday. Said in the press release. Poultry and eggs can be safely eaten if cooked properly.
Positive samples were taken from a herd in East Danegor Township, Lancaster County and tested at the Pennsylvania Veterinary Institute. This department quarantined farms and all commercial poultry facilities within a 10km radius of the infected herd.
“Protecting Pennsylvania’s $ 7.1 billion poultry industry is a top priority throughout the year,” Pennsylvania Agriculture Secretary Russell Reading said at a press conference Friday morning. “We have strict biosecurity protocols in place for both Pennsylvania farms and poultry products shipped inside and outside the state. Since 2016, we have installed equipment, equipment and laboratories to combat bird flu. In addition, we have a $ 2 million budget and secure it. Highly trained professionals are vigilant and support poultry farmers.
“Pennsylvania has no immediate public health concerns and we are ready to address this agricultural problem, but wild birds carry the virus and do not respect property or state boundaries.” He added. “Everyone who visits the farm should be aware that your car or shoes can carry the virus from other places you walked on. Unless you need to be there. Clean thoroughly and stay away from the poultry hut. Farm. “
This is the first confirmed case of highly pathogenic avian influenza in commercial poultry since the outbreak of 1983-1984 in Pennsylvania.
“All the farmers I talk to take the situation very seriously,” said William Ziders, a spokesman for the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture. “Some farmers I talked to have different doorways for delivery trucks and have such things to keep them away from poultry facilities.
Due to the recently detected highly pathogenic avian influenza in Lancaster County, the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau (PFB) is calling on farmers and those in need of farm visits to follow all biosecurity guidelines and advice from state authorities. increase.
“This is the first outbreak of AI seen in Pennsylvania for many years,” said Rick Evert, president of PFB, on Friday. “We would like to follow the state guidance and work with the authorities to remind everyone to implement advanced biosecurity measures to prevent the spread of this disease. If we all work together. , You can reduce the damage. “
As of April 15, 2022, 27 states, including most of the states around Pennsylvania, have been identified with birds infected with commercial and backyard poultry herds.
Highly pathogenic avian influenza spreads primarily through direct contact between healthy birds and the excrement of infected birds. The disease can cause sudden death without clinical symptoms. Lack of energy and appetite; Reduced spawning; Soft-shelled or malformed eggs; Swelling of the head, eyelids, combs, wattles, hock; Purple discoloration of wattles, combs, legs. Runny nose, cough, sneezing, lack of coordination and diarrhea.
Anyone suspected of having bird flu in their poultry can report their concerns to the Pennsylvania Animal Health Diagnostic Service Office (717-772-2852, Option 1) 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.