The Ministry of Agriculture and Food will hold an information session on Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2022, for small flock poultry owners in the Williams Lake area about the avian influenza virus, how they can protect their flocks and how to prepare for potential impacts if their birds become sick.
The session will be led by B.C. government veterinary specialists. Attendees will learn about:
- improving flock or farm biosecurity to reinforce against disease outbreaks;
- recognizing the signs of avian influenza and how to report cases;
- how foreign animal disease regulations affect small flock poultry;
- what to expect if a flock is positive for avian influenza; and
- resources available for non-commercial bird owners, including diagnostic services through the BC Animal Health Centre.
The session will be held at Thompson Rivers University, Williams Lake campus, from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2022. Attendees will receive a free biosecurity kit containing tools and information to help maintain good biosecurity practices. Although there is no cost to attend the session, seating is limited and registration is mandatory. Register online here: https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/410044663627
The risk of avian influenza to commercial poultry farms and small flocks increases each spring and fall, with the migration of waterfowl and other birds to and through British Columbia. The Williams Lake public information session is one of a series of sessions planned for communities throughout B.C. this fall.
- Avian influenza is a federally regulated disease, and the CFIA leads the investigation and response with provincial support for testing, mapping, surveillance and disposal.
- Wild birds have also tested positive for H5 strains of avian influenza in multiple regions of the province.
- The Wild Bird Mortality Investigation Program hotline, 1 866 431-2473, accepts public reports of dead wild birds.
- Since mid-April, the CFIA has confirmed 19 cases of avian influenza in commercial and small poultry flocks in communities throughout B.C.
- This is an extension of an ongoing North American outbreak.
CFIA information about current state of avian influenza in Canada: https://inspection.canada.ca/animal-health/terrestrial-animals/diseases/reportable/avian-influenza/response-to-detections-of-highly-pathogenic-avian-/eng/1640207916497/1640207916934
CFIA fact sheet about avian influenza: https://inspection.canada.ca/animal-health/terrestrial-animals/diseases/reportable/avian-influenza/fact-sheet/eng/1356193731667/1356193918453#a2
Ministry of Agriculture and Food information about avian influenza including what to be on the lookout for, resources for small flock owners, deputy chief veterinarian orders, and information about testing: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/industry/agriculture-seafood/animals-and-crops/animal-health/reportable-notifiable-diseases/avian-influenza-ai