Two commercial farms hit with infectious coryza

DELMARVA–Around the start of the new year, two commercial farms in Delaware received news that their poultry had contracted a deadly and highly infectious disease.

“That routine regularly testing in two cases in early January in Delmarva indicated that some of these flocks did have this infectious coryza,” James Fisher, with Delmarva Poultry Industry, said.

Infectious coryza, which is essentially a respiratory disease, is nothing new, but it is for the commercial farms here on Delmarva.

“This disease is new to Delmarva commercial chicken flocks to the 1,300 family farmers raising chicken for meat on Delmarva,” Fisher said.

The disease was first detected on the Peninsula in the summer of 2019 and then again later in the fall, but now it’s popping up again.

“We had it under control and its kinda just of a pop up, where it’s popped back up and there’s a lot of speculations to why, was it ever really gone or were we just not noticing it,” Jonathan Moyle, Extension Poultry Specialist in Maryland, said.

Specialists told 47ABC that although this disease does not affect people we’re the main ones who spread it.

“It could be tracked to another farm on someone’s shoe, if a farmer shares equipment with another farmer,” Fisher, said.

But officials said if farmers follow bio security measures, like having separate shoes, and clothes they wear on the farm, it could help prevent the spread of the disease.

“As long as we can control the people, spreading that disease we should be able to get a handle on it and it shouldn’t pose any problems down the road,” Moyle said.

Researchers and specialists are working in diagnostic labs to study poultry and diseases like coryza, in fact there is a new lab that will be coming soon to Salisbury.

“It’s a really great system we have on Delmarva, where the chicken companies and farmers and university labs all work together to monitor our flocks for any signs of disease,” Fisher said.

Fortunately, officials feel like they have a handle on the situation since infectious coryza has not been seen since early this month.

Categories: Delaware, Local News, Maryland