University of Missouri Extension will offer biosecurity workshops in April and May on how to prevent and respond to disease outbreaks in livestock and poultry operations, including backyard flocks.
“The importance of biosecurity came to light again recently as the avian influenza killed nearly 58 million chickens and turkeys in the U.S., resulting in higher egg prices. This followed the death of nearly 50 million birds in 2014-15,” said Teng Lim, MU Extension agricultural engineer and a member of the MU Biosecurity Team.
“Biosecurity protocols are critical to safeguard animal health, food safety, the environment and the economy,” says Lim. “Everyone working with livestock and poultry needs to be properly trained on executing biosecurity procedures and be reminded of the potential of disease outbreak.”
Locations and dates are Columbia, April 26; Macon, April 28; Mount Vernon, May 2; and Sedalia, May 4.
Topics are the same at each of the one-day workshops, Lim said. Topics include detection and quarantine procedures, mortality management and preparation, record keeping, disease identification and protocol, livestock insurance and resources, and composting. There also will be a tour of the new mobile biosecurity education trailer.
Representatives of the MU Extension Biosecurity Outreach Team, Missouri Department of Agriculture and Department of Natural Resources, and USDA APHIS teach workshops.
Register at the MU Biosecurity website: https://biosecurity.missouri.edu/ The workshop is free, Lim said, but preregistration is required to receive take-home materials. For more information or questions, contact Lim, LimT@missouri.edu or 573-882-9519.
The workshops are approved for four hours of veterinary continuing education credits.
A team of MU faculty, staff, and students has worked together over the years to improve the regional on-farm biosecurity practices. The team includes agricultural engineers, economists, veterinarians, animal scientists and veterinary diagnostic experts. MU faculty in the biosecurity outreach effort include Corinne Bromfield, Raymond Massey, Joseph Zulovich, Craig Payne and Lauren Delaney. A graduate student, Rana Das, helps with the recent outreach and research effort.
Partners on the project include USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Missouri Department of Agriculture, Missouri Department of Natural Resources, other stakeholders and the MU Biosecurity Outreach Program.
Current funding from the USDA National Animal Disease Preparedness and Response Program boosts national efforts to prevent animal diseases from entering the United States and spreading. The MU Biosecurity Team also received Extension Risk Management Education funding in 2017 and 2019.