Detecting Disease in your Flock

Ensure (don’t presume) workers are knowledgeable in recognizing signs of possible disease. Talk to them about what they should consider to be warning signs of a possible health issue. Write a standard operating procedure (SOP) to ensure everyone involved in the farming operation follows the same evaluation process. Ensure each member of the team signs off on having reviewed the information by using a dated form.

Observe your birds’ production levels, behaviour, clinical signs and feed and water consumption daily. Early detection of a disease is vital to minimize its impact and its containment to a single premise or individual production unit. Record treatments and mortalities.

Transporting and application of manure should comply with provincial environmental regulations/guidelines to help mitigate spread of disease beyond the farm gate. Loads should be covered when transporting. Manure should be stored on the farm if an infectious disease is suspected.