Information for Fairs, Shows, Auctions, and Swaps
The stop order movement issued by the Kansas Division of Animal Health has cancelled all poultry shows, fairs, auctions, and parking lot swaps and birds sold live at farmer's markets. If you have an event and don't know if its cancelled, think of it this way: If birds are brought together live in one place, then brought home live this is how diseases can rapidly spread throughout a community. This is the type of event that has been suspended until Dec 31, 2015. If you, or a hardware store, or feed COOP has chicks to sell or grown birds from your own single flock then this is allowed. It would be very prudent to keep a list of buyers just in case something pops up. This is good policy no matter if AI is involved.
A lot of people will be disappointed! I have put together a little handout that a show superintendent or sale manager you could make into a poster or brochure, to pass out to visitors to explain why the shows have been cancelled. This document can be modified with event names and places if needed.
Where are all the show birds?!? Back home in the barn is the short answer.......
...but the long answer is that the nation is battling an avian influenza outbreak which seems to have started as waterfowl migrated north this past spring. Along the way, some home flocks and commercial poultry came into contact with infected birds and the flu was able to spread though the industry in the Midwest.
- On June 9, 2015, the Kansas Division of Animal Health, after reviewing data that avian influenza had spread widely in poultry flocks in several adjacent states, placed a stop movement order for poultry so that bird to bird contact with this contagious disease would be prevented.
- Stop movement requests mean that any event where birds from different flocks are brought together will not be held this season. This includes county show, auctions, sales events, and even the 2015 Kansas State Fair.
- At the time of the stop movement order, Kansas had a couple of positive commercial poultry flocks, as well as one backyard flock of chickens and waterfowl. The order seems to have worked as Kansas has not experienced any further spread of the disease. This has shown how important good biosecurity can be for animal health.
- The order is in effect for all of 2015. This is because sooner or later those birds that flew north in the spring, will return south for winter feeding areas and we don't know if they will be carrying influenza.
- Though avian influenza is harmful to our poultry, there is no need to worry about human health because this form of influenza has only been able to spread through birds.
- Everyone has worked hard on their projects and they are so disappointed that they can't bring the birds. But hopefully this will pay off by stopping the spread of disease, preventing economic loss to commercial producers, while keeping our home flocks safe.