Categories: HealthNews

Health department urges caution handling baby chicks this spring

WYOMING –For many, spring means baby chicks and poultry purchases. As young children especially start handling arriving flocks, the Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) is reminding people baby birds can carry harmful germs even if they appear healthy and clean.

Salmonella is one bacteria found in animals that can cause diarrhea, fever, stomach cramps and other severe symptoms in humans. Baby poultry are a common source of the germ. Young children, the elderly, pregnant women and those with a weakened immune system are at an increased risk of developing severe symptoms from Salmonella.

“Because baby birds are soft and cute, many people want to touch, hold or even snuggle them but this behavior can be risky because the birds can have germs on their body and in their droppings,” said Tiffany Greenlee, surveillance epidemiologist with WDH.

Greenlee noted Wyoming regularly has cases of Salmonellosis in humans from contact with live poultry, especially in springtime.

“Unfortunately, last year Wyoming had a significant increase in the number of people infected with Salmonella who were part of larger, multistate outbreaks involving contact with baby chicks,” Greenlee said. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 2017 set a record for the highest number of illness related to baby poultry. “The germs we’re concerned with are also found where birds live such as in bird cages and coops. If someone puts their hands in or near their mouth after handling birds or touching the bird environment, they can become infected.”

Tips for handling live birds include:

  • Children younger than 5 years of age, elderly persons or people with weak immune systems shouldn’t handle or touch chicks or other live poultry.
  • After touching live poultry or anything in the area where they are found, wash hands thoroughly with soap and water. If soap and water aren’t available, use hand sanitizer.
  • Don’t let live poultry inside the house, in bathrooms or in areas where food or drink is prepared, served or stored.
  • Don’t eat or drink around live poultry, touch with the mouth or hold closely to the face.
  • Clean equipment or materials used in caring for live poultry outside the house, such as cages or feed or water containers.
Share
Published by
Tags: Wyoming Department of Health

Recent Posts

  • Food & Dining
  • Sponsored

Throw your holiday party at Calico

WILSON, WY— Don’t wait ‘til the night before Christmas— schedule your holiday party at Calico now! Calico offers great options… Read More

29 mins ago
  • Events
  • News
  • Sports

Moose back on the ice tonight with a weekend pair against Vail

JACKSON HOLE, WYO – The Jackson Hole Moose are about to see plenty of the Vail Yeti. The local hockey club… Read More

29 mins ago
  • Food & Dining
  • Recipes

Thanksgiving Prep: Kale, Carrot and Charred Date Salad

WILSON, WY — With less than a week to spare, it’s time to really start planning for your Thanksgiving. As… Read More

30 mins ago
  • News
  • Police

Police Log: Recent calls for service

JACKSON HOLE, WYO – Here are some recent calls for service in Teton County/Jackson from the dispatch log. Names may be… Read More

1 hour ago
  • Arts & Entertainment
  • Home
  • Sponsored

Snow ordinary fairytale! “Fairest of Them All” December 7-9

JACKSON, WY—  This is snow ordinary fairytale – expect cross-dressing princes, feisty dust mites, a flurry of baby animals, delightful… Read More

4 hours ago
  • News
  • Nonprofit

Turkey tradition: Jackson Elks to host free community Thanksgiving meal

JACKSON HOLE, WYO – The tradition continues as the Jackson Elks Lodge No. 1713 will once again host a free… Read More

5 hours ago