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Update on Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) in Alberta
After a lull in the number of cases in June and July, cases are starting to occur again along with the fall wild bird migratory season. As a result, the risk level appears to be rising. More information on Alberta's situation.
There is an extremely low risk to human health and no risk to food safety. While some strains have the potential to infect humans, previous cases of avian influenza in people have involved close contact with infected birds or heavily contaminated environments.
There is no effective vaccine or cure for this disease, which can be spread to farmed flocks during wild bird migratory season. Biosecurity is essential for protecting your flocks and preventing the disease’s spread. More information on reducing the risk of HPAI can be found at Avian influenza in domestic birds.
HPAI is a reportable disease, so if you suspect or confirm a case in your flock, you must report it to:
- the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA)
Email: [email protected]
- or the Office of the Chief Provincial Veterinarian.
If you have concerns about sick or dead wild birds, please call 310-0000 or your local Fish and Wildlife Office.
The CFIA is leading the investigation and response.
Having strong animal health policy and practices is important to Alberta's livestock and other animals. It's also important to public health, Alberta's environment and the agriculture industry.
Alberta’s Office of the Chief Provincial Veterinarian (OCPV) provides scientific and veterinary leadership in developing animal health policy, and works to prevent and respond to animal health concerns.
The OCPV focuses on:
- animal disease prevention and control activities
- overseeing administration of Alberta's Animal Health Act
- providing advice and recommendations on related animal health topics
A key part of the OCPV's work is on collaboration and joint response. This includes:
- working closely with other provinces, levels of government, and industry on various food animal health topics including reportable and notifiable diseases
- working with Alberta Health and Alberta Health Services on a number of topics that are important to both animal and public health, such as rabies and Salmonella
- collaborating with Alberta Environment and Parks' Fish and Wildlife Division on animal health topics and disease responses that affect both livestock and wildlife – these include chronic wasting disease, tuberculosis, brucellosis and avian influenza
Chief Provincial Veterinarian
Dr. Keith Lehman, Chief Provincial Veterinarian
Dr. Lehman has been in the role of Chief Provincial Veterinarian since July 2016.
Born and raised in Alberta’s Vegreville area, Dr. Keith Lehman graduated from the University of Alberta with a BSc in Agriculture in 1994 and from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan in 1999. Dr. Lehman has worked in private mixed animal practice and at both the federal and provincial levels of government.
Connect with the Office of the Chief Provincial Veterinarian:
Hours: 8:15 am to 4:30 pm (open Monday to Friday, closed statutory holidays)
Toll free: 310-0000 before the phone number (in Alberta)
After business hours: 1-800-524-0051
O.S. Longman Building
6909 116 Street
Edmonton, Alberta T6H 4P2
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