Is anyone worried about bird flu?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by cakkleberrylane, Jul 18, 2007.

  1. cakkleberrylane

    cakkleberrylane In the Brooder

    Jan 13, 2007
    I'm hearing more and more in the news about bird flu. Last I heard, it was coming for sure and almost here. What's going to happen to our chickens. Will we all have to kill all our chickens? We have wild chickens living near us too. Will there be a vaccine for the chickens? Or just for people?
    My daughter is a pharmacist and went to her annual continuing education weekend. They were pretty adament that people should start killing their chickens now.
  2. justusnak

    justusnak Flock Mistress

    Feb 28, 2007
    South Eastern Indiana
    Start killing thier chickens now????? Ohhhh jeesh!! I dont think so! Im not going to worry about ti untill mine show some sort of symptoms. Again, the media scare. Dont fall for it. Im sure you and your family will be just fine! It wont be long untill they have medicated feed..for our feathered babies.
  3. Zenbirder

    Zenbirder Songster

    May 3, 2007
    New Mexico
    One of the things I thought about in getting chickens is that: if bird flu hits the big egg operations, and they kill many chickens to prevent the spread of the disease, then the price of eggs will go sky high. Those of us with chickens, and our friends and family, may be the only ones eating eggs besides rich people.
  4. SeaChick

    SeaChick Songster

    Apr 25, 2007
    Southern Maine
    I did quite a bit of research about this for my City Council. All you have to do is google around a little and you'll find the official web sites of every state saying that avian flu is NOT a problem to be concerned about re: backyard flocks. Here are some examples, as well as an NPR story about this exact issue:
    This is representative of most state's health pages, and clearly says not to get rid of your chickens, scroll down to near the bottom:

    one thing, the type of bird flu that passes to humans has NOT been found in North America. It is on the other side of the world. For another thing, it is spread by poor sanitation, ie contact with poop/blood of infected birds. So, poorly-maintained large "factory" flocks are more likely to spread it than carefully-kept pet chickens. Also, theoretically your pet cat is more likely to be infected (from eating an infected migratory bird) than your penned chickens. Most importantly, avian flu (of any type, even the kind that doesn't pass to humans) is most likely to be contracted from infected migratory birds. So, free-ranging farm flocks that intermingle, say, drinking from the same pond as Canada Geese, are possibly at risk, SHOULD the virus ever reach this continent..... but confined backyard flocks are NOT.

    I have a letter from our Maine State Veterinarian stating that proper sanitation and husbandry can lessen or eliminate any risk.

    Obviously, knowing the facts and staying abreast of latest developments is important if you raise chickens. Clearly if there was an outbreak here we would have to get rid of backyard flocks. But for now, people should stop believing the media frenzy. They always use scare tactics.... turn off Fox news and find some real facts.... Look to experts in this issue, not people who don't really know (I would tend to believe the CDC, livestock scientists, etc rather than pharmacists).....Avian flu is not a cause for alarm in the United States right now.

    Just my 2 cents....
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2007
  5. cakkleberrylane

    cakkleberrylane In the Brooder

    Jan 13, 2007
    Thanks very much everyone for all your great information. I love my babies and since I was there for almost all the hatchings, I couldn't bear to end their lives. We have some migratory birds that enter our yard and share the water with the chickens, maybe as a precaution I'll move the waterers so they are only accessable to the chickens.
    Thanks again folks!!!
  6. Chelly

    Chelly Cooped Up

    May 11, 2007
    Most of these stories are aimed at generating PANIC in the general population.
    And the reason is so you'll run out and BUY something....

    Take em with a cup of salt!
  7. Betsy

    Betsy Songster

    Mar 24, 2007
    Northeast Indiana
    I don't believe it. As Sea Chick said, there's alot of info out there with proof that it's not going to be a threat.
    Also, many of today's backyard breeds are over 100 years old which means they provided meat and eggs with no problems during the 1918 flu epidemic which some people say was started by birds.
    Overall, I think this Bird Flu thing is just a way for big Agri business and the government to take away our right to raise our own poultry.
  8. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude

    Agreed, Betsy. The backyard flocks are the LEAST likely birds to be affected anyway, even if we did have bird flu here, which we do not (not the H5N1)
    It's the monocultures with huge numbers of chickens crammed in substandard conditions where an epidemic would sweep through like wildfire.
  9. Cheeks

    Cheeks Songster

    May 10, 2007
    Quote:nononono. sorry, i have to correct this. its my thesis for my masters. [​IMG]

    it originally started as a normal, run of the mill bird sickness, but the flu went through an antigenic shift (which is basically a large scale mutation) inside of a pig. so since many types of swine flu are transferable to human, the 1918 flu was able to infect people. it was no longer able to infect birds at this point, after the mutation. just swine and people.

    the pigs caused the flu mutation, not a bird.
  10. Frozen Feathers

    Frozen Feathers Songster

    May 4, 2007
    Interesting, Cheeks. Pig Flu. Well it's not surprising that in 1918 there would have been such an outbreak. Look at sanitation, was there really any?

    Anyway, on the topic at hand, no I don't believe we have to worry about catching Bird flu. If I may be so bold, the bird flu scare is just a way of keeping us scared and taking our mind of other things that are happening, that perhaps some others in our government don't want us thinking about...keep people scared and they're less likely to question logic...

    Edit:they're, their,'s all so confusing [​IMG]
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 19, 2007

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