Addressing the needs of poultry stakeholders, how to target effective outreach and applied research
PI: Rodrigo Gallardo; CO-PI: Rüdiger Hauck, Maurice Pitesky, H. L. Shivaprasad, and Gabriel Senties-Cue
Our main goal is to locate and educate small flock owners. In addition, social network analysis will be used to understand the different aspects and interactions of small poultry practices in two demographically different populations in California. We hypothesize that using our proposed methodology an appropriate outreach strategy will be generated allowing for improved outreach, disease prevention and applied research. If these strategies prove to be effective they could serve as a model for other states in the U.S. in collaboration with partner universities.
We propose to facilitate an intensive lab and lecture-training program at two strategic locations. Small animal veterinarians working with poultry, farm advisors, agricultural commissioners, master gardeners, 4-H leaders and feed-store managers will be encouraged to participate. The training will be performed in locations with high concentration of small flocks based on the current geo-survey and personal experience.
This course will be designed to provide a practical background in backyard and small flock meat and egg poultry through lectures covering health and management, disease preventative measures, critical discussions, and laboratories including health assessment of poultry, basic field necropsies, etc. Specifically, lectures on nutrition, behavior, biosecurity, brooding, egg and meat production, viral, bacterial and parasitic diseases, regulations, handling, sample collection and basic necropsy will be provided.
Using a previously tested SNA method we will be able to map the social networks associated with backyard and small poultry flocks. This analysis tool allows the identification of connected and disconnected stakeholders and stakeholder groups. By understanding the relationships between the attendees and their backyard and commercial poultry contacts we can focus our outreach toward areas of greatest need via a combination of the network and further focused training. This type of analysis is a good structured step toward reaching out to the myriad backyard and commercial poultry stakeholders.
In addition, a pilot project trying to assess the respiratory diseases antibody profile in backyard flocks near and far from commercial poultry premises will be performed. We hypothesize that BY chickens located in different areas will have differing antibody profiles. Some of these antibody profiles will indicate exposure to pathogens that may induce risk to the commercial poultry industry.
This type of work could be a first structured step towards detecting and outreaching a myriad of backyard and small commercial poultry stakeholders providing them with practical information and surveillance in benefit of the commercial poultry industry.