|All poultry events canceled in Nebraska|
|Written by Wauneta Breeze|
|Thursday, 11 June 2015 16:53|
By Dharma Blake-Cole
The Wauneta Breeze
After much consultation with Nebraska Extension and poultry industry leaders, the Nebraska Department of Agriculture, also known as the NDA, cancelled all poultry events across Nebraska through Jan 1, 2016.
The ban includes all events where birds are co-mingled. These include local and county fairs and festivals, the Nebraska State Fair, Ak-Sar-Ben, swap meets, exotic sales and live bird auctions.
The ban prevents all 4-H members from taking their birds to the Nebraska county and state fairs this season. 4-Hers are still encouraged to finish their projects as Nebraska Extension is working to identify other ways for the youth to showcase their learning and participate in the fairs in other ways.
These events have been banned in an effort to prevent the spread of HPAI and to protect the physical and economic health of Nebraska’s poultry sector.
The highly pathogenic H5N2 avian influenza (HPAI) has been spreading across Nebraska with cases found in Dixon County with a second case, referred to as Dixon 2, found in close proximity to the first outbreak. NDA found a third case named Dixon 3 within a mile of the original outbreak named Dixon 1. A fourth case was found in Knox County.
All cases of the outbreak were in farms owned by the same operator. In all the outbreaks a perimeter was established and the birds were depopulated.
With all the cases of the outbreak, under USDA protocol, the NDA visited all locations that have poultry within a six mile radius.
All Nebraska poultry producers, large and small, should help stop the spread of HPAI by monitoring their flocks for symptoms of the virus and notify the NDA immediately if they suspect any problems.
Poultry owners should prevent contact between their birds and other birds including wild birds. Additional information about H5N2 avian influenza can be found online at www.nda.nebraska.gov.
All suspicions, such as sick birds or unusual bird deaths, should be reported immediately to the NDA by calling 877-800-4080 or to the USDA’s toll free number 1-866-536-7593.