Avian Influenza Detected in Livingston County

A case of avian influenza has been found in Livingston County, making it the fourth case of the highly contagious virus found in Michigan this year.

Following an investigation by the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Veterinary Services Laboratories confirmed the presence of avian influenza (HPAI) in a non-commercial poultry flock from Livingston County.

Previous cases of HPAI were detected in Kalamazoo, Macomb and Menominee counties.

“As we continue to respond to HPAI in Michigan, we are strongly encouraging all flock owners to take steps to better protect their poultry and help reduce the spread of this disease. Now is the time for action,” said State Veterinarian Dr. Nora Wineland. “Taking every step possible to keep wild birds and the germs they could be carrying away from domestic birds will help to limit the spread and impact of this virus, keeping Michigan’s flocks healthy.”

HPAI is a highly contagious virus that can be spread in various ways from flock to flock, including by wild birds, through contact with infected poultry, by equipment, and on the clothing and shoes of caretakers. To protect other flocks in Michigan, the premises is currently under quarantine, and the birds will be depopulated to prevent further disease spread.

As a result of this detection, there are no anticipated disruptions to supply chains and no threat to public health or food safety.

According to MDARD, the following biosecurity measures is fundamental to protect the health and vitality of Michigan’s domestic birds:

  • Prevent contact between domestic and wild birds by bringing them indoors or ensuring their outdoor area is fully enclosed.
  • Wash your hands before and after handling birds as well as when moving between different coops.
  • Disinfecting boots and other gear when moving between coops.
  • Do not share equipment or other supplies between coops or other farms.
  • Cleaning and disinfecting equipment and other supplies between uses. If it cannot be disinfected, discard it.
  • Using well or municipal water as drinking water for birds.
  • Keep poultry feed secure to ensure there is no contact between the feed/feed ingredients and wild birds or rodents.

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 (daytime) or 517-373-0440 (after-hours).