Slaughter of poultry during the epidemic of avian influenza in the Netherlands in 2003

M.A. Gerritzen, E. Lambooij, J.A. Stegeman, B.M. Spruijt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

During an outbreak of avian influenza in the Netherlands in spring 2003, the disease was controlled by destroying all the poultry on the infected farms and on all the farms within a radius of 3 km. In total, 30 million birds were killed on 1242 farms and in more than 8000 hobby flocks, by using mobile containers filled with carbon dioxide, mobile electrocution lines and by gassing whole poultry houses with carbon monoxide or carbon dioxide. Observations of these methods were used to compare their effectiveness and capacity, and their effects on the welfare of the birds. Gassing whole poultry houses had a much greater capacity than mobile equipment, and catching live birds to bring them to a mobile killing device caused extra stress and could cause pain due to injuries inflicted when catching and handling them. Gassing whole poultry houses with carbon monoxide requires strict safety regulations and, therefore, gassing with carbon dioxide was considered preferable. However, this method is not suited to all types of housing, and in these circumstances mobile killing devices were a useful alternative
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-42
JournalVeterinary Record
Volume159
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2006

Keywords

  • different gas-mixtures
  • carbon-dioxide
  • broiler-chickens
  • euthanasia
  • anesthesia
  • oxygen
  • rats
  • hens

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