Poultry producers are being reminded to follow all biosecurity protocols to keep their flocks disease free.
Reports of the highly pathogenic avian influenza H5 strain show it has now been found in three commercial poultry flocks in central Alberta( two in Mountain View County and one in Ponoka County ) and a wild bird in (Elrose) Saskatchewan.
In February, two outbreaks of the H5 strain were found on commercial poultry farms in Nova Scotia, then in started showing up in flocks in Ontario in March.
Cases in wild birds have now been found in Saskatchewan, BC, all four Atlantic provinces and Quebec..
Biosecurity measures for poultry operations includes keeping wild birds away from poultry flocks and their food and water supply, limiting visitors, and monitoring bird health.
Producers should contact their veterinarian if they have any concerns about the health of their flocks and the CFIA is HPAI is suspected.
The risk of transmission to humans is considered low and does not pose a food safety risk.
Regular food safety and hygiene precautions should be followed when preparing wild game, and hunters should avoid eating birds that are visibly ill.
Clusters of unusual mortality should be reported to a Fish and Wildlife office in Alberta or call toll-free 310-0000 to get the phone number of the closest office.
In Saskatchewan, reports of any sick or dead birds should be made to the Ministry of Environment to assist with monitoring efforts 1-800-567-4224
Reports can also be made to the Canadian Wildlife Health Cooperative at 306-966-5815 or cwhc.wildlifesubmisisons.org.
With migratory birds now making their way back to Canada, people are being encouraged to watch out for and report
- Clusters of two or more dead waterfowl (e.g. ducks, geese) or other water birds
- Dead raptors or avian scavengers (e.g. ravens, crows, gulls).
- Raptors, waterfowl or avian scavengers that appear to be sick.
- Large groups of dead birds (e.g. more than 50) of any species