Michigan lifts statewide pause on poultry and waterfowl shows – CW50 Detroit

(CBS DETROIT) — The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development announced Monday that it has lifted a pause on poultry and waterfowl exhibits after no new cases of highly pathogenic avian influenza were reported within 30 days.

MDARD says the statewide pause was lifted on Saturday.

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The pause was put in place on May 10 to reduce the spread of the virus. A a case has been reported in the state’s first commercial herd One day later ; however, MDARD says no other cases have been reported in domestic birds.

This has impacted shows, exhibits, swap meets, petting zoos at fairs, and game bird/waterfowl exhibits. This did not include or affect exhibits on egg hatching, pigeon racing and zoos.

“Even if the state was able to reach this incredibly important benchmark, that doesn’t mean the virus has left Michigan,” state veterinarian Dr. Nora Wineland said in a news release. “HPAI continues to be detected in wild birds statewide, which is not unexpected as the virus is known to be carried by wild birds. Given that the virus is still present in the environment, it is still crucial that owners and keepers of domestic birds take all possible measures to protect their flocks.

According to MDARD, although the break has been lifted, officials are still urging guards to follow protective measures to further reduce the spread of the virus.

Whether it’s a few backyard birds or a large commercial flock, following some key steps is fundamental to protecting the health and vitality of Michigan’s domesticated birds:

  • Prevent contact between domestic and wild birds by bringing them indoors or ensuring their outdoor area is fully enclosed.
  • Wash your hands before and after handling birds and when moving between different barns.
  • Disinfect boots and other equipment when moving between barns.
  • Do not share equipment or other supplies between co-ops or other farms.
  • Cleaning and disinfection equipment and other supplies between uses. If it cannot be disinfected, throw it away.
  • Use of well or municipal water as drinking water for birds.
  • Store poultry feed in a safe place to ensure that there is no contact between the feed/feed ingredients and wild birds or rodents.

Reporting of possible cases

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For domestic birds

Owners and keepers of domestic birds should watch for unusual deaths of more than one bird, a noticeable drop in egg production, a significant decrease in water consumption, or an increase in the number of sick birds. If avian flu is suspected in domestic birdscontact MDARD immediately at 800-292-3939 (daytime) or 517-373-0440 (after hours).

For wild birds

If anyone notices what appear to be unusual or unexplained deaths among wild bird populations, please report such cases to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) by:

  • Use of DNRs Eyes in the Field App. Choose the “Sick Wildlife” option from the selections for “Observation Forms”.
  • Call the MNR Wildlife Disease Laboratory at 517-336-5030.

The public health risk remains low, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

On May 13, officials said the virus was detected in three baby red foxes. According to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, the kits have been confirmed dead.

They were the first confirmation of the state of the virus in wild mammals. The fox kits were collected from dens between April 1 and April 14.

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