Avian Influenza

The Facts - October 17, 2017

  • As of April 14 and after weeks of testing flocks within the Alabama surveillance zones, there has been no new detection of avian influenza.
  • The Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries has lifted its order prohibiting poultry exhibitions and other assemblies of birds.
  • As of April 14, 2017, all poultry exhibitions, sales at fairs, festivals, swap meets, exotic sales and live bird markets, flea markets and auctions are allowed to resume their normal operating routines.
  • Even though the disease threat has diminished, officials encourage both commercial poultry producers and backyard flock owners to continue to observe their birds closely and to be vigilant in practicing strict biosecurity measures.
  • Order Rescinding the Prohibition of Poultry Exhibitions and the Assembling of Poultry to be Sold Issued
  • Previous Updates

What Backyard Flock Owners Can Do

    Protecting Your Poultry

  • Inforgraphic for Protecting Backyard Flocks Continue effective biosecurity measures.
  • Do not move birds from their current location.
  • Do not visit farms or other households with poultry.
  • If you travel to a place where other birds are present or even to the feed store, clean and disinfect tires, poultry cages and equipment before returning to your property. These can harbor germs.
  • Keep out unnecessary visitors. Other people and birds—including new birds recently purchased and wild birds—can carry diseases to backyard flocks.
  • If visitors have birds of their own, do not let them enter your bird area or have any access to your birds.
  • Be sure that feeders are in a covered location where wild birds cannot gain access. This will help reduce the potential for disease carried in the droppings of wild birds.

    Keeping Waterfowl at Bay

  • Stop feeding wild ducks and other waterfowl. In many cases, when people stop feeding them, the birds leave.
  • Modify your landscape. Geese and ducks prefer short, green grass. Let grass grow longer so it is unattractive to them. Along water edges, plant less attractive vegetation. Waterfowl prefer nesting on islands, peninsulas and undisturbed grounds. When landscaping, do not create these types of areas. If they already exist, consider changes to make them less attractive as nesting sites.
  • Install barriers. Waterfowl's natural tendency is to land on water and then walk onto adjacent grassy areas to feed and rest. Fences, hedgerows and other physical barriers can help restrict easy movement.
  • Use scaring devices. Large helium-filled balloons, strobe lights, scarecrows with movable parts, reflecting tape, Mylar flags and other measures will help keep geese and other waterfowl from feeding and resting on property. Move scaring devices periodically to keept the birds from getting used to them. Before using noisemakers or pyrotechnics, check local and state regulations for permit requirements and any other limits on using these devices.
  • Hunting. Where it is safe and legal, hunting can help control some species of residential waterfowl. State wildlife professionals can advise you on local laws and regulations including hunting seasons for waterfowl.

Alabama Poultry Industry

  • Alabama is the nation's second largest producer of broilers (chickens bred and raised for meat production).
  • Poultry and egg production generate more than $15 billion a year in Alabama.
  • More than 85,000 jobs in the state relate to the poultry and egg business.
  • Top broiler producing counties:
    1. Cullman
    2. Dekalb
    3. Marshall