Provide comments on a proposed rule change and read about an ASF detection in Asia

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board of animal health

Animal Bytes

February 2019

Request for Comments on Proposed Rule Change

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Poultry Rule Change

On February 19, 2019, the Minnesota Board of Animal Health published a request for comments on its possible amendment to rules governing Mycoplasma requirements for turkeys. Under the current rules, testing for Mycoplasma gallisepticum and Mycoplasma synoviae is required for all turkey hatcheries and breeding flocks. Similar rules also apply to poultry dealers, those attending community sales and exhibitions, and those importing turkeys into Minnesota.

The proposed rule amendments would restrict the Mycoplasma testing and/or Mycoplasma clean classification requirement to commercial turkey producers, consistent with the requirements for commercial egg-type chicken and commercial meat-type chicken hatcheries and breeding flocks.

You can review the proposed rule change on the Board's website by clicking this link.

You may also review the proposed rule and submit written comments via the Office of Administrative Hearings Rulemaking eComments website at this link.

If you would like to be included on the Board’s official rulemaking mailing list, please click "Manage Preferences" at the bottom left of this email and elect to subscribe to "Public Rulemaking."

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African Swine Fever detected in Vietnam

The Swine Health Information Center's (SHIC) Swine Disease Global Surveillance Report announced a new detection of African Swine Fever (ASF) in Vietnam. The Vietnamese Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Animal Health Department confirmed ASF was detected in two provinces in northern Vietnam.

Click this link to view the full SHIC report.

Updated Pet Travel Website

The USDA offers a popular website full of resources for people traveling with their pets. Users can get information on international imports, exports or state-to-state movement. The process varies by country and by type of pet, and there are specific steps to follow along the way.

The recent website update is intended to reduce the complexity of traveling with pets, and the changes should benefit both pet owners and veterinarians.

The USDA also made several changes to assist accredited veterinarians through the process. In the case of pet travel, they are responsible for examining pets, completing necessary tests and filling out the required documentation. The USDA also updated the country-specific pages to add guidance documents and annotated certificates to help ensure the forms are completed correctly.

Click here to visit the updated website.

Virulent Newcastle Disease outbreak continues in California

Although virulent Newcastle Disease is not a human health or food safety concern, it can wreak havoc on poultry populations. California is still responding to an outbreak that began in May 2018 in backyard exhibition birds. Only three commercial operations have been infected in the outbreak to date. One case of backyard exhibition chickens has been identified in Utah, but was traced back to the outbreak in California. The USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has an overview of the disease and a timeline of its response available on its website.

Click here to review the latest about virulent Newcastle Disease in California.

Biosecurity: Plan, Prepare and Practice

Biosecurity is a process for protecting farms and livestock from infectious diseases. Farmers can create and carryout biosecurity plans and practices specific to their farm and animals. Diseases can be introduced into a farm or animal from a variety of sources, and a good plan addresses all known routes of disease transmission from agents like viruses, bacteria, fungi and parasites. The intent of a biosecurity plan is to outline what measures will be taken to keep a strong “clean” and “dirty” line between the farm and the external environment. Biosecurity procedures can involve plants, animals, people, equipment, air, water, food and waste.

Learn how plans can be tailored to species at this link to the Board website.