By Staff Reports
(Apple Valley)– Due to the Virulent Newcastle Disease outbreak in Southern California, the Apple Valley Animal Shelter is not accepting owner-surrendered birds at this time.
Virulent Newcastle Disease (VND), formerly known as Exotic Newcastle Disease, is a serious, highly contagious viral disease that can affect poultry and other birds.
Citizens should not bring ill or deceased birds to the shelter and instead should contact the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA). Animal Services staff will also not bring ill birds into the Apple Valley Animal Shelter. Exposed, ill and deceased birds will be handled offsite following CDFA recommendations.
CDFA is informing the public that moving birds is the primary way in which this disease may be spread. People in contact with sick birds can also move the virus on their hands, clothes, shoes, and equipment. It is important that residents who live in identified control areas do not move birds out of the area or introduce new birds to their property until they are notified that the quarantine is released to prevent disease spread.
“We need to keep our shelter healthy and off quarantine,” said Director of Animal Services Gina Whiteside. “By taking these precautionary steps, we will continue to maintain the highest level of care for our community and all of our animals. It is also recommended that owners keep other animals isolated from their backyard birds. Small pets tend to walk through bird waste and can potentially spread the virus.”
On February 27, 2019, the CDFA along with the California State Veterinarian, Dr. Annette Jones, modified the Southern California’s quarantine areas to include the large areas of San Bernardino and Riverside counties. The quarantine mandates the reporting of sick birds and prohibits poultry owners from moving birds.
For more information on the outbreak including a map of the quarantine area and additional precautions, visit www.cdfa.ca.gov or call (866) 922-BIRD (2473).