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Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
U.S. Department of Agriculture

USDA FAQ's and resources about coronavirus (COVID-19).  LEARN MORE

Biosecurity for Backyard/Exhibition Poultry

As a poultry grower, we know you care deeply about keeping birds healthy. By practicing biosecurity, you can help reduce the chances of your birds being exposed to animal diseases such as avian influenza (AI) or virulent Newcastle disease (vND). And you can help protect the spread of infectious diseases like these to other flocks.

"Biosecurity" may not be a household word. But for poultry growers like you it can spell the difference between health and disease. Biosecurity means using common sense practices. It’s a commitment to defending the health of the nation’s flocks each and every day.

With disease threats on the rise, biosecurity is more important than ever. Infectious diseases such as avian influenza and virulent Newcastle Disease lead to the deaths of millions of birds and vast financial losses. Poultry can also carry germs such as Salmonella, which leads to thousands of hospitalizations and kills hundreds of people in the U.S. every year. Disease outbreaks also result in job and financial losses, quarantines limiting trade, and higher prices on eggs, prepared poultry, and other staples.

The Defend the Flock education program provides the tools and resources that you need to make sure that you are doing everything possible to keep your birds healthy and reduce the risk that an infectious disease will spread from your property to other flocks.  Defend the Flock resources reflect the knowledge, insights, and experience from USDA, veterinarians, professional owners and growers, scientists, and other experts.

Defend the Flock incorporates the research-based practices used by commercial growers across the country. Disease outbreaks harms everyone – from cancelled poultry shows, auctions, fairs and exhibits, to quarantines limiting trade, to job and financial losses. Use Defend the Flock to gain practical tips for elevating basic biosecurity steps to the highest levels of disease prevention. Biosecurity is a team effort. We all have to work together to defend our flocks.

National Poultry Improvement Plan — 14 Principles

The biosecurity strategies supported by the Defend the Flock program are based on 14 principles in the National Poultry Improvement Plan (NPIP). You may know the “six simple steps” for biosecurity. These expanded principles, developed with input from USDA, veterinarians, scientists, commercial owners and growers, and other experts, reflect the very best practices in disease prevention.

Biosecurity is a team effort. We all have to work together to defend our flocks. Use the Defend the Flock checklists and resource materials, webinars and other educational programs to make sure your daily and seasonal routines do double-duty to prevent the outbreak and spread of disease. All materials are available at the Defend the Flock Resource Center.

Commercial Poultry | Backyard/Exhibition | Wild Birds | Pet Birds

Defend the FlockBiosecurity | Outbreak/Illness | Resource Center 


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