Since March, Iowa poultry operations have been hit hard with highly pathogenic avian influenza. After each case of bird flu, these operations must go through a depopulation process and then a quarantine process.

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Flocks are depopulated to help slow the spread of avian influenza. Operations then go through a quarantine process that prohibits the movement of poultry and poultry products on or off affected premises. In order to be released from the quarantine, operations must complete cleaning, disinfecting, and environmental sampling processes.

On May 16th, three flocks in Iowa were released from quarantine status.

The sites:

  • A Commercial pullet site in Franklin County
  • A commercial turkey site in Hamilton County
  • A commercial breeding chickens site in Humboldt County

In a statement from Iowa Agriculture Secretary Mike Naig, he said these quarantine releases are a step in the right direction but there is still more work to be done,

I am extremely proud of our ability to move quickly to implement our response plans that minimize virus spread, protect the health of Iowa’s poultry flocks, and ensure farmers can continue farming. Moving forward, the Iowa Department of Agriculture, along with USDA, producers, and other industry stakeholders will continue efforts to effectively manage this outbreak.

Farmers on these sites will be able to bring birds back into the barns and start up production. Iowa Turkey Federation's Gretta Irwin told Iowa Public Radio that this process has been faster than the 2015 outbreak.

I really attribute that to better plans, better communication, and better preparation by the farmers.

Poultry organizations and operations are continuing to talk about ways

19 poultry sites across Iowa have been infected with avian influenza this year. 15 of the infected flocks are on commercial operations and four are backyard flocks.

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