Fact: Tips to avoid bird flu
The Swedish Agency for Agriculture lists the following tips on its website to avoid catching bird flu:
+ Prevent contact with wild birds and minimize the risk of indirect contact with wild birds and their feathers and droppings.
+ Inspect buildings and carry out necessary maintenance so they are tight and have functioning water drainage.
+ Ensure that ventilation devices are bird-proof and repair any deficiencies in bird nets and hoods.
+ Provide feed and drinking water indoors or under a shelter outdoors if you keep your poultry outdoors.
+ Ensure that only necessary personnel have access to the animal areas.
+ Cut grass and keep clean around buildings and enclosures.
+ Check and control pests regularly.
+ Change clothes and shoes at the hygienic limit when entering spaces where you keep birds.
+ Wash your hands with soap and water and also feel free to use hand sanitizer.
Source: Swedish Agency for Agriculture
The increased presence of wild bird species, which provide a reservoir for the virus, and the colder weather contribute to the increased risk at this time of year.
Put extra focus on protecting herds of poultry from contact with wild birds and be careful with the infection control routines, urges the agency.
“Good hygiene practices are essential for all animal owners. It is also good to prepare for the fact that it may be necessary to bring your birds into an enclosure or indoors to protect them from contact with wild birds. If you have problems with the presence of wild birds, especially ducks in the vicinity of your facility, try to scare them away,” says Enisa Miljanic, infection control officer at the Swedish Agency for Agriculture in a press release.
The 2020-2021 flu season was the worst ever and millions of poultry were killed. Every fourth hen disappeared.
The 2021–2022 season was quieter from a Swedish point of view, but out in Europe it was bigger. than the previous one.
“The risk of domesticated birds being affected by bird flu is therefore greater than in previous years,” writes the Swedish Agency for Agriculture.
Last year, it was also discovered that the virus “oversummered”, that, unlike previous years, it was the same virus that ravaged in the spring as in the autumn.