Why Worry About Birds? Safety First!

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Health – Disease Issues

Prevent Salmonella from Farm to the TableBirds have been known disease carriers for years, but are receiving so much press now due to the method the disease is spread – through their droppings. The longest known disease caused from birds and their droppings is Salmonella which becomes airborne. Salmonella has caused much sickness in humans, even death in some. Diseases associated with birds have often spread to animals such as cows in dairy farms and other related locations.

The most obvious example is when the diseased bird directly defecates into a human food or water source. In the summer of 1993, New York faced a health crisis when several hundred people came down with a mysterious ailment. The illness was traced to sea gull droppings in an old city reservoir. Health inspectors are quick to shut down a food processing plant if nuisance birds are found inside. Besides direct contamination, airborne spores from drying feces in air ducts and vents can settle on exposed food and transfer disease. Several thousand cases of food poisoning, most often associated with Salmonella,  are attributed to this disease transmission route every year.

Other diseases associated with wild birds are:

  • »  Salmonella (links to action video)
  • »  West Nile Virus (links to Mayo Clinic)
  • »  Bacterial infections
  • »  Paratyphoid
  • »  Vibriosis
  • »  Listeriosis
  • »  Pasteurellosis
  • »  Fungal infections
  • »  Histoplasmosis
  • »  Candidiasis
  • »  Sarcosporidiosias
  • »  Blastomycosis
  • »  Viral infections
  • »  Encephalitis
  • »  Meningitis
  • »  Psittacosis
  • »  Newcastle Disease
  • »  St. Louis Encephalitis
  • »  Protozoal infections
  • »  Toxoplasmosis
  • »  Trichomoniasis
  • »  American Trypansomiasis

FDA Consumer Health Information
Food Bill Aims to Improve Safety: Recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that one in six people in the United States suffers from food-borne illness each year.

Read more: “Prevention from the Farm to the Table”
Will open a page from the CDC in a new tab/window.

California Firm Recalls Chicken Products Due to Possible Salmonella
Report from July 18, 2014 by Quality Assurance & Food Safety – opens in a new tab/window.

Avian Flu Outbreak – August 2013

Avian Flu Diary: Cambodia
Blogger Michael Coston reports on various types of flu, including Avian Flu. Read more about the avian flu in Cambodia which shows a connection between the diseased birds and people.

Medical Press: Avian Flu
A novel avian influenza virus has acquired the ability to infect aquatic mammals and was responsible for an outbreak of fatal pneumonia that recently struck harbor seals in New England.

The Lancet – Infectious Diseases – Avian Flu
As the number of cases and deaths caused by influenza A H7N9 in China continue to rise, David Holmes takes a look at some of the key gaps in our knowledge.

Airplane Safety Issue

Airplane surrounded by birds in flight
Here’s a situation that no one wants. Prevention is key to keeping birds away from planes in flight. Placement of the BirdBuffer® in open areas around runways and hangars helps to keep birds out of the skies around airports, preventing dangerous bird-strikes.

 

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