Georgia lifts avian-flu related ban on poultry exhibitions
With no new avian influenza detections in Georgia and bordering states, threat of the virus’ spread is greatly reduced
The Georgia Department of Agriculture (GDA) has lifted its ban on poultry assemblies that was put in place to prevent the spread of avian influenza.
With the lifting of the ban, which was put in effect on March 16, all poultry exhibitions, shows, sales, swaps and meets in the state can resume.
The ban had been put in place on March 16. At that point, avian influenza had not been detected in Georgia, but it had been in neighboring Tennessee and Alabama.
Georgia’s only avian influenza detection occurred in a commercial breeding facility in Chattooga County. There, about 18,000 chickens were affected by H7N9 avian influenza.
According to a press release issued by GDA, the decision to lift the ban was based on a lack of new avian influenza cases in not only Georgia, but also in Tennessee, Alabama, Kentucky and Georgia. The department stated that multiple rounds of surveillance were conducted with no additional birds testing positive for the virus. However, Georgia State Veterinarian Robert M. Cobb Jr. continues to remind poultry producers to maintain strong biosecurity practices at all times.
The last confirmed case of avian influenza in the United States was in a flock of 2,700 free-range layers in Christian County. That case, which was the second in 2017 for Christian County, involved low pathogenic H7N9 avian influenza.
A similar poultry exhibition ban in Alabama has already been lifted. Dr. Tony Frazier, Kentucky state veterinarian, said: “We are quite confident the avian influenza threat is over…