Small flocks in Peace, Summerland, Sechelt test positive for avian influenza…

VICTORIA, BC: The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has confirmed that small poultry flocks in the Regional District of Peace River, District Municipality of Sechelt and the Town of Summerland have tested positive for the highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza virus.

The infected premises have been placed under quarantine by the CFIA and B.C.’s Ministry of Agriculture and Food has notified producers within a 10-kilometre radius about the positive test results.

Owners of small or backyard flocks are urged to continue to be vigilant and have appropriate preventative measures in place. Measures include eliminating or reducing opportunities for poultry to encounter wild birds, reducing human access to the flock and increased cleaning, disinfection and sanitization of all things (including clothing and footwear) when entering areas where flocks are housed.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Food continues to work closely with the CFIA and B.C. poultry producers to ensure enhanced prevention and preparedness measures are in place to protect poultry flocks. The first confirmation of H5N1 in B.C. poultry was at a commercial producer in the Regional District of North Okanagan in mid-April.

Avian influenza is a federally regulated disease and the CFIA leads the investigation and response with provincial support for testing, mapping, surveillance and disposal.

Wild birds have also tested positive for H5 strains of avian influenza in multiple regions of the province. The Wild Bird Mortality Investigation Program toll-free hotline, 1 866 431-2473, accepts reports of dead wild birds from the public.

Written and released by BC Government

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