September 15, 2022 update: Due to fall migration starting, the Sanctuary will stop corn sales to do our part to keep our birds safe. Avian influenza never left the state of Michigan. Bird movement lessens during the nesting season. Now that migration has begun, cases are being reported again and it will spread. If you have backyard birds, make sure to practice good biosecurity to keep your flock safe.
June 15, 2022 update: As of June 14, 2022 it has been 30 days since a case of HPAI has been reported in Michigan. The Sanctuary will resume corn sales and feeding of wild birds.
Originally published on May 3, 2022
Highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) has been detected in our area and is spreading during this migration season. You can see the
current distribution on this map. HPAI strains occur naturally among all wild birds. Waterfowl, shorebirds, raptors, and scavenger bird species are the most susceptible to the disease. HPAI is very contagious among birds and can be easily spread to domestic chickens, ducks, and turkeys. Any bird species can become infected and some can appear healthy while they carry and spread the virus. On very rare occasions, HPAI can also be transmitted to humans.
Ways that HPAI is transmitted:
- Nasal secretions
- Surfaces that have any of the above
Ways you can limit transmission in your flock:
- Eliminate all contact between your domestic flock and the wild birds around them by securing indoor and outdoor spaces
- Wash your hands both before and after handling birds
- Disinfect shoes after leaving the coop/pen
- Clean/Disinfect equipment like rakes or shovels after use, or discard if equipment cannot be cleaned
- If you have multiple flocks, it is extremely important to take the sanitary steps between groups of birds
- Use municipal or well water for your flocks drinking water
- Secure birds’ food from any contact with wild birds or rodents
Symptoms of HPAI in birds:
- Sudden death without clinical signs
- Lack of energy and appetite
- Nasal discharge, coughing, and sneezing
- Swelling or discoloration of extremities
- Decreased egg production or misshapen eggs
If you suspect avian influenza, who to contact:
Domestic flocks: Contact MDARD at 800-292-3939 or 517-373-0440.
Wild birds: If you notice the death of three or more free-ranging birds report it to the DNR through the Eyes in the Field reporting tool or by calling the Wildlife Disease Lab at 517-336-5030
Guidance on Bird Feeders during HPAI Outbreak:
The risk of an outbreak in wild songbirds is very low. All birds do have the potential of avian influenza infection. Our state agencies are advising caution, but not declaring any type of action.
It is highly recommended to take down your feeders if you:
- Have backyard birds like chickens, ducks, or turkeys
- Have any of the more susceptible wild bird species at your feeders like waterfowl, shorebirds, raptors, and scavengers
If you keep your feeders up, it is even more important that you clean and sanitize your feeders at least once a week.
What is the Sanctuary doing?
Here are the actions that the Kellogg Bird Sanctuary has taken to prevent the spread:
- Stopped the sale of corn for visitors to feed the waterfowl until further notice
- Placed sanitizing stations for hands and bottoms of shoes along our path for our visitors
- Increased biosecurity between our groups of raptors, waterfowl and gamebirds during our daily bird care