Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler sits down each week with Southern Farm Network’s Rhonda Garrison to discuss “Today’s Topic.”
Highly pathogenic avian influenza hasn’t hit North Carolina, but the NCDA&CS is preparing for the possibility it will affect the state this fall when waterfowl from Canada migrate south along the East Coast.
One of the things department personnel have learned from having seen the effects of the outbreak in other states is that rapid response is extremely important to controlling the disease. The department’s Veterinary and Emergency Programs divisions have been stocking up on supplies and equipment, and cross-training personnel so that they can respond quickly if an outbreak occurs in North Carolina.
State Veterinarian Doug Meckes also has issued some emergency orders aimed at helping to prevent the disease and open up more communication with bird owners. He has suspended poultry shows, live auctions and similar sales from Aug. 15 to Jan. 15.
He is also requiring flock owners to register with the department so that they can be contacted in the event of an outbreak in North Carolina. Biosecurity is very important in disease prevention, and the sooner that flock owners know about any outbreak near them, the better off they’ll be in taking extra steps to protect their birds and farms.
Registration is free, and information will be kept confidential by law. Active participants in the National Poultry Improvement Plan do not need to register. More information and a registration form are online here.
Click on the audio player below to listen to Commissioner Troxler and Rhonda discuss the state’s preparations for avian flu.
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