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Virulent Newcastle Disease Update: Quarantine Boundaries Modified in Southern California

California State Veterinarian Dr. Annette Jones today modified Southern California’s quarantine area to further restrict bird movement as work continues to eradicate virulent Newcastle disease (VND). The quarantine mandates the reporting of sick birds and prohibits poultry owners from moving birds in all of Los Angeles County, and in large areas of San Bernardino and Riverside counties.

The modified quarantine extends from the northern and southern borders of western Riverside County to the Salton Sea—including the Coachella Valley—and as far east as Yucca Valley in San Bernardino County, with a northern boundary of State Route 58 at the Kern County line. The quarantine language and a map may be found at CDFA’s VND Web site.

The quarantine requires bird owners to allow diagnostic testing, to isolate poultry from other species, to cease exhibitions, to stop the shipping and receiving of birds, and to enhance biosecurity.

“By modifying the quarantine area in Southern California, we are building upon an ongoing effort to eradicate virulent Newcastle disease,” said Dr. Jones. “The primary way that VND spreads is by people moving sick birds. Extending the prohibition of bird movement across a larger area is the next logical step in being able to stop the spread of the virus and to eradicate the disease.”

VND is a nearly-always fatal respiratory infection in poultry. Birds may seem healthy but will die within days of being infected. There is no cure. The virus is also transmitted by people who have VND on their clothes or shoes, and by equipment or vehicles that can transport the disease from place to place.

There are no human health concerns provided that any meat or eggs are cooked properly. People who come in direct contact with the virus may develop conjunctivitis-like symptoms or run a mild fever.

The only way to stop the virus and eradicate the disease is to euthanize birds. This includes all infected birds as well as birds within heavily-infected areas.

Since May 2018, staff from the California Department of Agriculture (CDFA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) have been working in joint incident command to eradicate VND in Southern California. The highly contagious virus has resulted, or will soon result, in the euthanasia of more than one million birds in Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino, and Ventura counties.

Birds from four poultry industry producers in Riverside County and two poultry industry producer in San Bernardino County have also been infected with VND and all birds in those facilities have been or will be euthanized.

For more information about movement restrictions, biosecurity, and testing requirements, please call the Sick Bird Hotline (866) 922-2473 or email SFSPermits@cdfa.ca.gov.

10 Responses to Virulent Newcastle Disease Update: Quarantine Boundaries Modified in Southern California

  • This is my problem with the way your handling things. If the bird owners can prove their birds are not sick and continue to prove that why are there healthy birds being killed. Just another way for the big commercial chicken industry to make more money and take out the small town farmers and pet owners!!!!

  • Since San Bernadino is such a large county, wouldn’t it make sense to at least tell us where positive cases have been found? A zip code maybe? Surely the CDFA is making our county officials aware?
    Do you realize in the rural areas we share tractor equipment, rental equipment, veterinarians going property to property, feed store deliveries? And the virus can be transferred on shows and tires?
    The CDFA has failed the general public by not doing a proper education/awareness campaign and it should have been done in Spanish as well. It’s been a year since this virus first broke out over a year ago.
    Can the county help with some sort of awareness and education in any way?. Believe it or not, MANY people still do not know and another case has been confirmed in our county again this last week.
    Many people don’t even know about the QT restrictions, mich less biosecurity measures. Lysol even works for this
    Many county residents are fearing the terrorization and inhumane euthanasia practices that have been witnessed in Riverside County. This last week, the CDFA has been in Phelan posting testing notices and seceral of their workers have been caught scourging around people’s properties. (Assuming looking for poultry)
    This is causing fear and anger. Is there any agency in our county that is going to protect our rights as property owners? Out here, it’s only a matter of time before a CDFA worker is attacked by guard dogs when their owners aren’t home. Is there anyone overseeing what is going on?
    Can our county do a press release and give the citizens some information please? What zip codes are the positives in? What should we expect from the CDFA in terms of testing, etc? Address the quarantine protocols and individual biosecurity?

  • When are you going to update this? It is almost June

  • While this speaks to poultry, what about Psittaciformes (parrots), they are vulnerable to VND . I’m concerned about all the Bird Marts being held in quarantine areas. There was one a couple of months ago in San Bernardino and I just got a notice of one March 17th 2019 at the Pomona Fairgrounds. I keep parrots and used to keep poultry, and others do as well. Birds are brought to these events from all over Southern California and they occur every three months or so in various So Cal locations.

  • Are you checking game cock fighting bird owners, as Vnd was first attributed to them in 2018. How many commercial, private bird owners, and exhibition birds will be euthanized before the state stops this underground cock fighting virus spreading population?
    Vnd is alive and well in Baja Mexico. We need dogs that can sniff out birds trying to be smuggled into USA.
    I am appalled this has gone on so long and can’t believe it’s not eradicated yet. Almost a year and millions of birds destroyed. It’s about time the Government gets involved and gives California a state of emergency status for additional funding to track down and eradicate this insidious epidemic.

    • Hi Rosland, the California Department of Food and Agriculture is handling this outbreak and the County is sharing this information with our residents so they can be informed. If you have specific questions or comments about the ongoing issues with Virulent Newcastle Disease we invite you to contact Steve Lyle at CDFA at (916) 654-0462. Thank you for your concerns about this issue.

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