The best part about spring, summer, and fall is that farmers markets, bird swaps, and fairs are up and running again. The bad part? You can bring diseases home to your feathered friends from the birds you encounter or acquire at these fun places.
There are things you can do to help keep your birds healthy!
If you come in contact or are around other poultry:
1) Take a shower when you get home, and change your cloths/shoes before going around your birds.
2) Wash your car in a car wash on your way home. When you and your car visit places that have a lot of different birds, its not just you that carries disease.
3) Better yet, keep designated clothes and shoes for when you work with your birds!
Why? You can carry diseases on your cloths, shoes, and car from birds/products that you visit or come in contact with. Imagine a person that is sick, sneezes on their hand, and touches the doorknob someone is going to use after them. Disease is transmitted via the doorknob. You essentially become the doorknob between the sick bird and your birds, and you have the potential to carry disease home.
What if you come home with a new addition?
1) Keep your new birds separated from the birds you already have for a month. This is called a quarantine period.
2) Take care of the birds you already have first, then take care of your new birds second.
3) Wash your hands before and after working with each group of birds, not only for their safety, but for yours as well.
4) Have designated shoes for each group of birds.
Why? If the new birds have a contagious disease, they will most likely show symptoms within the first month. You can try to prevent spreading the disease to the birds you already have.