With the continuing number of outbreaks of Avian Flu it would seem a good time to remind ourselves how important bio security of our properties is.
Avian Flu is of course a notifiable disease of birds but there is the other concern with any flu outbreak that the strain can mutate and also cross between species.
If avian flu is found on a premises that also keeps pigs the pigs would be tested too but no testing would take place on pigs with an outbreak prevention zone, unless of course, there was deemed to be a risk and need.
If a pig was found to have avian flu it would be culled.
Bio security starts at home and not only protects your pigs but the health status of the country. For small producers keeping rare breed pigs bio security could be vital to preserving rare bloodlines.
Your pigs are at risk from new pigs coming onto your holding, you visiting other farms and markets, vermin and birds.
Simple steps will minimise the risks
1. Check the health status of pigs you buy in
2. Isolate new arrivals
3. Keep disinfectant available and use it
4. Wear clean overalls and boots when visiting other farms or markets. Disinfect before leaving.
5. Have a herd health plan
6. Keep feed in bins and have a rat control programme
7. Worm regularly
8. Disinfect buildings regularly
9. Wash trailer at abattoir rather than at home
10 Never feed kitchen waste
11 Know the signs of ill health and isolate sick pigs