Avian Influenza Surveillance

Wild Bird Surveys

Surveillance in wild birds is one of a series of AI prevention and preparedness initiatives the Government of Canada has implemented in partnership with provincial/territorial governments, industry and animal and public health practitioners.

Canadian Notifiable Avian Influenza Surveillance System

CanNAISS is a joint initiative of government, industry, and Canadian farmers to prevent, detect and eliminate the presence of H5 and H7 subtypes of notifiable avian influenza in Canada's domestic poultry flocks. It is one of a number of domestic and international surveillance initiatives for notifiable avian influenza.

Why was CanNAISS developed?

CanNAISS is designed to meet notifiable avian influenza guidelines from the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE)and trade requirements from the European Union. It is designed to detect the presence of notifiable avian influenza in live Canadian poultry, and enhances Canada's surveillance efforts. CanNAISS provides information about notifiable avian influenza viruses in Canada's domestic poultry flocks so that Canadian poultry producers and processors can do business internationally.

What is notifiable avian influenza?

Notifiable avian influenza is defined by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) as any “type A” avian influenza virus with high pathogenicity, as well as all H5 and H7 virus subtypes regardless of pathogenicity. “Pathogenicity” refers to the severity of the illness caused in birds. While most avian influenza viruses pose little to no animal health risk, the H5 and H7 subtypes may lead to serious illness in birds.

How is Canada currently doing surveillance for notifiable avian influenza?

There are many surveillance activities. Canada currently monitors for notifiable avian influenza through:

  • Wild bird surveillance;
  • Passive surveillance in domestic poultry when clinical signs suggestive of notifiable avian influenza are reported;
  • Targeted surveillance when notifiable avian influenza is detected;
  • Pre-slaughter surveillance in commercial poultry (chickens and turkeys);
  • Hatchery supply flock surveillance; and
  • Voluntary enhanced surveillance in the poultry genetic exporters sector.
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