Following an investigation by the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Veterinary Services Laboratories confirmed highly pathogenic avian influenza in a non-commercial backyard flock in Menominee County. Jennifer Holton Director of Communications for the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development says, “HPAI has been affecting several states across the Nation.”
Holton says, “Since there is no licensing or registration to be followed in the State of Michigan. It’s really about being able to reach out and work with smaller backyard poultry owners so they are ad-hearing to biosecurity practices.”
Poultry owners and caretakers should watch for unusual deaths, a drop in egg production, a significant decrease in water consumption, or an increase in sick birds. If avian influenza is suspected, contact MDARD immediately at 800-292-3939 during the day or 517-373-0440 after hours. This is the third detection in domestic birds in the state, and the first in the U.P.