Planting Seeds - Food & Farming News from CDFA

Defend the Flock – a new outreach campaign for bird owners

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is launching a new outreach campaign focused on preventing the spread of infectious poultry diseases in both commercial and backyard poultry.  Considering the devastating impact of the highly pathogenic avian influenza outbreak in 2014-2015, as well as this year’s outbreak of virulent Newcastle disease in California, the timing is right for everyone in the poultry community to work together to protect the health of our nation’s flocks.

The “Defend the Flock” campaign to promote biosecurity combines and updates two previous campaigns that were each targeted at a specific segment of the poultry population.

USDA has introduced a web page for the campaign,, where bird owners can find important information about protecting flocks from disease. The site also has a resource section, including a series of checklists each covering specific biosecurity principles. Bird producers, growers, workers and enthusiasts alike can use these as regular reminders for maintaining a high level of biosecurity.

NOTE – California bird owners are urged to call the State Bird Hotline if they have sick birds. 866-922-2473.


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