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Fowl News: May 2016

Fowl News: April/May 2016

Anne Lichtenwalner DVM PhD

University of Maine Cooperative Extension


Is It Spring Yet?


Officially, the answer is yes: but if this week is any measure, the ground won’t warm up for weeks.  Still, it’s time to be thinking about summer.  Those of you who travel with your birds, or show them, might want to think about biosecurity precautions for the coming year.  We have masses of Canada geese on the Penobscot River right now, and wild ducks are moving through the area.  Both wild birds and domestic birds can sometimes carry diseases and parasites that you can avoid with simple precautions. 


  • Use screening of your coops, tractors and pens to keep small birds from visiting your poultry and stealing their grain, bringing diseases like mycoplasma and salmonella along with them. 


  • Use clear, plexiglass-type dividers between poultry cages at shows to decrease beak-to-beak contact of your birds with other farms’ birds.


  • Optimize nutrition and housing of your birds to maximize their resistance to disease. 


  • Keep wild bird feeding stations separate from your poultry areas.


There is no way of completely eliminating diseases from your birds’ environment, but you can reduce it to manageable levels with good planning.  If you or your vet would like support from the University of Maine Animal Health Lab in diagnosis of poultry disease, call 207-581-2789.


Anne Lichtenwalner, 2016