Diagnosis of Poultry Diseases

Darrell W. Trampel, DVM, PhD, Extension Poultry Veterinarian and Poultry Diagnostician, Veterinary Diagnostic and Production Animal Medicine

Situation:     

Iowa is the No. 1 egg producing state in America with over 55 million laying hens.  The egg industry continues to grow in this state and Hy-Line International is the world’s largest source of genetics for egg-type chickens.   Iowa produces approximately 8.0 million turkeys per year.  A significant broiler industry is centered around Agri-Processors in Postville, IA which is a kosher processing plant.  Iowa has the one of the nation’s largest producer of quail eggs and chicks and this country’s largest producer of Hungarian partridge.

A certain degree of mortality is associated with commercial production of poultry.  For example, livability of turkeys between placement in the brooder house as poults and marketing at 18 weeks is approximately 90%.  In addition to diseases that cause mortality, other subclinical disease conditions exist that do not kill the birds but reduce the rate of gain and feed efficiency of a flock.

Objective:     

A major part of the job responsibilities of the ISU extension poultry veterinarian is to provide diagnostic assistance to Iowa’s commercial poultry producers, gamebird producers, and owners of small-scale or hobby flocks.  In addition, Dr. Trampel serves as the coordinator of two state-wide poultry disease surveillance programs: a) Avian Influenza in turkey and chicken flocks and b) Salmonella enteritidis monitoring of commercial egg-type chicken flocks..    

Activities/Output: 

The poultry diagnostic cases from January 1, 2007 through December 31, 2007 are listed below.

Diagnostic Cases (January 1, 2007 - December 31, 2007). 

testReportName  Total Accessions        Total Test     
Anticoagulant Panel                                     1       3      
Avian influenza AGID                                    374     7479   
Avian influenza AGID - 1                                1089    20215  
Avian influenza AGID - EY                               187     2504   
Avian Influenza ELISA                                   15      451    
Avian Pneumovirus ELISA                                 351     4065   
Avian Pneumovirus IFA (NVSL)                            25      27     
Bacterial ID Extended                                   23      34     
Bacterial ID Short                                      67      112    
Comments                                                36      36     
Culture Saved                                           17      142    
Culture Summary                                         2       2      
Custom Chemistry                                        1       130    
Egg Culture -  Negative                                 3       81     
Fungal Culture Results                                  1       1      
Hematoxylin and Eosin Slides                            131     513    
Necropsy (juvenile - adult)                             91      91     
Necropsy (neonate - fetus)                              62      62     
Past multocida somatic typing (NADC)                    2       2      
PCR - Avian influenza virus                             176     178    
PCR - based detection                                   1       2      
PCR - PRRSV fluid                                       1       6      
Poultry - Salmonella Enviromental Negative              272     1003   
Poultry - Salmonella Enviromental Positive              211     872    
Poultry - Salmonella Enviromental Suspicious            232     823    
Poultry Susceptibility                                  4       5      
Poultry Susceptibility                                  37      47     
Poultry Susceptibility                                  40      51     
PRRS virus ELISA                                        7       110    
Routine Culture                                         65      565    
Routine Culture                                         49      252    
Routine Culture                                         70      70     
Routine Culture                                         50      50     
Routine Culture - Aerobic and Anaerobic                 1       1      
Routine Culture - Aerobic and Anaerobic                 1       1      
Salmonella Id                                           14      14     
Salmonella Identification (NVSL)                        153     277    
Sodium in feed or tissue                                2       2      
Sodium in fluids                                        1       2      
Special Stains - Acid Fast                              1       2      
Special Stains - Fungus (GMS)                           2       3      
Special Stains - Mast Cells (Giemsa)                    1       3      
Tetra enrichment                                        72      189    
Type A Rotavirus antigen-capture ELISA                  4       4      
Total   2,366    

      
ISU LIMS indicates that 148 cases involved necropsy, and 125 cases involved histopathology.

2.      Avian species for which necropsy, histopathology, or both were performed.

        Egg-type Chickens   (Layers)              96

        Meat-type Chickens (Broilers)             12

        Turkeys                   25

        Pigeons                   28

        Quail                       4

        Peafowl                     2

        Partridge                           3

        Psittacine                          1

        Total                   171

Impact/Outcomes: 

This work provides vital support for Iowa’s poultry and gamebird industries in general as well as for specific companies, such as Hy-Line North America and Hy-Line International.  Poultry producers receive individual attention and the most rapid diagnoses that science will allow.  A rapid diagnosis permits early intervention via vaccination, antibiotic therapy, or management changes which greatly reduce the morbidity and mortality in affected flocks.  In addition to protecting bird health, monitoring programs for avian influenza and Salmonella enteritidis are potential zoonotic diseases and ongoing surveillance programs are important for protecting public health.

2008

180 – Other ANR Programs

Page last updated: August 26, 2008
Page maintained by Linda Schultz, lschultz@iastate.edu