Written by Tyler R. Etter
The 72 commercial poultry operations in Iowa with confirmed cases of highly pathogenic avian
influenza (HPAI) are no longer under quarantine. The affected facilities may begin the process
of restocking their bird populations.
To lift the quarantine, all sites had to go through a cleaning and disinfection process, followed by
negative results on environmental tests for traces of infection. After the disinfection period, a
waiting period of 21 days applied before the quarantines could be lifted. There are still five
backyard poultry operations still under quarantine however, due to a 180 day waiting period
following depopulation. The Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship expects
these quarantines to be lifted in the next month.
There have been no new reports of HPAI since June 17 in Iowa, but scientists are keeping an
eye on migratory bird populations to detect a recurrence of an outbreak. The migration patterns
have been delayed by a warm fall season and officials will need at least a month to be sure that
infections have not recurred.
Nationwide, all but five of the 219 commercial operations have finished the cleaning and
disinfection process. Turkey farms are expected to recover by mid-December, but egg farms will
continue the process into 2017 according to industry officials.