The disease doesn’t discriminate in regard to either age or type of bird

Emily Lhamon: infectious coryza frustrating, scary

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Infectious coryza (IC), a bacterial disease of chickens, has appeared in Lancaster Country, which is the largest, most densely populated poultry area in the United States.

Pennsylvania Poultry Extension Specialist  Emily Lhamon said the University of Pennsylvania and Penn State University have developed a GIS mapping system to track the spread of IC, and it’s focused in Lancaster County, but there are also a few distant disparate flocks as well.

The disease doesn’t discriminate in regard to either age or type of bird…”It kills them all: breeders, layers, pullets…That’s the scary part,” Lhamon said at the Poultry Industry Council’s Research Update.

The frustrating part is that spread of infectious coryza is due to poor biosecurity, said Lhamon. So, it is preventable.

The first cases of IC in Pennsylvania were reported in late March, and there had not been a case reported for five days, as of May 1, 2019, so Lhamon was hoping it was uncontrol.  Warmer temperatures will also kill the bacteria, she said.

Merck’s Vet Manual describes infectious coryza as “an acute respiratory disease of chickens characterized by nasal discharge, sneezing, and swelling of the face under the eyes.”

According to Merck, IC iIs most prevalent in commercial flocks in California and the southeast, with occasional outbreaks in the northeastern U.S.

The causative bacterium is Avibacterium paragallinarum. Chronically ill or healthy carrier birds are the reservoir of infection. Chickens of all ages are susceptible, but susceptibility increases with age. The incubation period is one to three days, and the disease duration is usually two to three weeks, though it may last longer when there are other diseases in the flock.

Transmission of IC is by direct contact, airborne droplets, and contamination of drinking water.

All in/all out management of barns has helped to eradicate the disease.

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