LANCASTER COUNTY, Pa. (WHTM) — Two new outbreaks of the avian flu have appeared in the Midstate. This time it involves a backyard chicken flock in Lancaster County and a commercial farm in York County.
“This is a problem that is statewide. Literally from border to border,” said Grant Gulibon, PA Farm Bureau.
The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture is working with organizations like the PA Farm Bureau, which says prevention is key.
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“Practice good biosecurity, bring your birds in, keep them under cover as much as possible, and don’t put food for wild birds,” Gulibon said.
That’s because wild birds have been some of the biggest carriers, and 4.3 million birds have been put down to prevent the virus from spreading through flocks. Gulibon says the warmer weather helped keep bird flu cases at bay this summer.
“Now as we are in the migration season and going into the spring migration season as well. This is going to be an issue Pennsylvania farms are going to have to deal with,” he said.
In a statement, the PA Department of Agriculture said: “Protecting Pennsylvania’s $7.1 billion poultry industry and the 26,600 jobs it supports is a year-round top priority. The PA Dept. of Agriculture continues to work closely with the poultry industry, and the USDA to react quickly to test and prevent the spread of the infection and get farms back in business as quickly as possible.”
But it’s not just farmers that have a reason to worry, so do consumers.
”Not just birds for meat but eggs. All the poultry products that we enjoy and so that’s going to put upward pressure on pricing if we see a large outbreak if a large number of birds have to depopulated,” Gulibon said.
For more information, go to Biosecurity is Key in Preventing Avian Influenza Spread – Pennsylvania Farm Bureau (pfb.com)