ILT outbreak triggers biosecurity measures in southwestern Ontario town
By Canadian Poultry magazineNews Disease watch
ICT outbreak prompts strict biosecurity measures in Ontario's Wellesley Township.
In response to the detection of Infectious Laryngotracheitis (ILT) in a commercial flock, the Feather Board Command Centre (FBCC) has issued a biosecurity advisory for a 10 km area in the Township of Wellesley in southwestern Ontario. The advisory is expected to remain in effect until early April 2024.
The FBCC received alerts confirming the presence of ILT, a highly contagious respiratory virus primarily affecting chickens. Poultry farmers and those working with avian species are urged to reinforce biosecurity protocols when interacting with birds or traveling through the affected region.
Signs of ILT in poultry include increased mortality, noisy breathing, head-shaking, decreased egg production, inactivity, ruffled feathers, and conjunctivitis. Farmers are advised to promptly contact both their veterinarian and board representative if any signs of health concerns arise within their flocks.
Farmers in the advisory area are instructed to avoid contact with non-commercial poultry and other birds. Biosecurity measures should be heightened by limiting farm visitors to essential service providers only, monitoring the movement of birds, people, and equipment onto and off the premises, and enforcing strict cleaning and disinfection practices. Farmers are also urged to minimize visits to other poultry production sites and avoid exchanging equipment unless it is properly washed and disinfected.
Personnel in contact with birds or entering production sites should wear clean boots, protective suits, head coverings, and gloves, practicing thorough cleaning and disinfection before and after visits, including handwashing. Adequate control of vermin and wild birds is essential to prevent further spread of the disease.
Small flock growers can access specific resources at SmallFlockOntario.ca for guidance on managing ILT outbreaks. Additionally, with highly pathogenic avian influenza still prevalent, all poultry farms are reminded to maintain heightened biosecurity protocols.
Service providers to poultry farmers in the affected area are urged to minimize and properly sequence travel, applying recommended biosecurity measures during essential visits. Clean boots, protective suits, hats, and gloves, along with handwashing, are essential precautions. Deliveries or loading in the advisory area should be the last on the route, and vehicles must undergo thorough washing and disinfection of the undercarriage and steps before proceeding with any other deliveries or loading.
For updates on the ILT situation in Wellesley Township, residents are encouraged to visit www.fbcc.ca, where any relevant information will be promptly issued by the Feather Board Command Centre.
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