Avian Influenza Confirmation in TN

Hello all,

I just wanted to make you aware of the issues concerning the confirmation of Avian Influenza confirmation in TN. Please see the message below from Dr. Tabler, our UT Poultry Extension Specialist, regarding the confirmation of avian influenza in Tennessee and the steps all poultry owners should be taking to limit the spread.   More about the Current Bird Flu Situation …

Karla Gargus,



Please find attached additional guidance from Dr. Samantha Beaty (Tennessee State Veterinarian) and TDA regarding the confirmation of H5N1 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) in a flock of backyard poultry in western Tennessee.  Please understand that suspension orders are never an easy decision, particularly this time of year when many counties have their 4-H chick chain programs and fair season is in full swing.  However, it is critical that everyone follow guidelines set forth by Dr. Beaty and TDA as we work through this situation.  Dr. Beaty and her TDA Field Staff have procedures in place for situations such as this and it’s important that we all assist them in the endeavor.

Letter – Suspension of Poultry Shows and Sales

9.15.2022 HPAI Detected in TN

These actions are being taken to control any future Avian Influenza occurrences and limit spread of the disease.  Please read carefully the attached documents and remind your backyard and 4-H poultry clientele to be extra vigilant in the coming days and rachet up their biosecurity procedures.  Make sure they understand to closely monitor the health status of their flocks and to immediately report any sudden increase in the number of sick or dead birds to the Tennessee State Veterinarian’s office at 615-837-5120.  They should not wait until tomorrow to see if things get better.  If something looks out of the ordinary, ask them to report it immediately.

Until Dr. Beaty lifts the suspension order, which will be in effect for a minimum of 30 days but could be longer depending on the situation, backyard poultry should not leave the premises.  Make your clientele aware that commingling birds increases any potential disease threat so keep birds at home and have a strong biosecurity program in place.  Your clientele should not visit other birds. They should consider using booties or dedicated footwear that is only used when working in the pen or coop. They should change clothes and shoes after visiting the feed store, co-op, or other locations that other backyard poultry keepers may frequent before visiting their birds to prevent tracking something back home to their birds.  Ask them not to acquire new birds until after the suspension is lifted.

Backyard and commercial poultry are a large part of Tennessee agriculture and must be protected.  With everyone’s help, we can stop the spread of HPAI and get things back to normal as quickly as possible.  If any has any questions, please let me know.  Thanks!!


Tom Tabler, Ph.D. | Professor
Poultry Specialist, UT Extension and UT AgResearch
Department of Animal Science
PO Box 160, 1000 Main Entrance Drive
Spring Hill, TN 37174
479-879-3937 Mobile / 931-486-2129 Office |

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