The devastating virus has yet to impact Georgia’s top agricultural industry, but University of Georgia Cooperative Extension poultry scientist Casey Ritz believes it’s best if Georgia farmers are proactive in dealing with avian influenza.“Having everybody on the same page ahead of time will alleviate some of the confusion and panic that would happen and has happened in the past,” Ritz said. “The more initial training and education that we can do, the more appropriate will be our response.” If a chicken tests positive for the highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) virus, the entire flock must be depopulated to prevent further spread of the infection. Depopulation must occur within 24 hours of a positive test, according to Ritz.“Sometimes the timing of an outbreak event may lend itself to one method over another. It also might be dependent on where the outbreak occurs,“ Ritz said. “In south Georgia, burial is not an option because of the high water table. Landfilling might not be an option, if there’s not one certified by the state to dispose of animal mortality.” Composting is usually the predominant method of disposal. “Of the cases that have been disposed of in the Midwest, 90 percent or more have been composted,” Ritz said. Composting is a natural process that recycles decomposed, organic materials into a soil, otherwise known as compost. Composting involves returning nutrients back into the soil.“Ideally, as soon as the birds are dead, you would start composting them. The 24-hour depopulation time frame is the standard that we must try to meet,” Ritz said.Though avian influenza outbreaks date back many years, this particular high pathogenic strain was initially discovered in December 2014 in the Pacific Northwest. Waterfowl tend to be the primary carriers of the virus. When waterfowl are more abundant, like when birds fly south during the fall, the risk is heightened and Georgia becomes more susceptible.“During bird migration, there is increased risk and concern, certainly. Over the winter months when bird movement is limited, it’s less of a risk than when migrations are occurring. Currently there’s a heightened risk that we need to be mindful of,” Ritz said.Georgia’s poultry industry accounted for 39 percent of the state’s total farm-gate production value, or $5.5 billion, in 2014, according to the UGA Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development.More information on biosecurity for poultry is available online at extension.uga.edu/topics/poultry/avian-flu or through your county UGA Extension office.
“Across Africa, World Cup fever is running high, with the majority of Africans planning to watch the contest. However, GeoPoll data highlights the interesting facts that very few are aware of which African nations have qualified, and even fewer are predicting an African win,” said Nick Becker, CEO of GeoPoll.In a survey of 2,400 respondents across Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa and Tanzania, GeoPoll found that respondents were fairly evenly split in believing that either Brazil or Germany was most likely to win the 2018 World Cup, with 22 percent predicting a win by Brazil and 20 percent forecasting a German win.However, in South Africa, 26 percent of men believe Brazil will come out glorious, and 26 percent believe Germany will, but South African women lean more towards Brazil, with 20 per cent predicting a win for the South American nation, while just 13 per cent think Germany will win.-African Teams-Arsenal forward Alex Iwobi celebrates scoring Nigeria’s fourth goal against Argentina. PHOTO/DMFrom Africa’s five qualifying teams of Egypt, Morocco, Nigeria, Senegal, and Tunisia, the South African public is expecting little, with the greatest hopes being the 1 per cent of men and 3 percent of women predicting a Nigerian win.Other African teams get a smattering of win predictions, with 1 percent of South African women believing Senegal will win, but another 1 percent also predicting that each of Angola, Namibia, Ethiopia, Ghana, Zambia and Zimbabwe will win, none of whom are participating, and 19 percent forecasting a South African win, with South Africa also having failed to qualify.Across South African men, 6 percent are expecting a win from non-qualifiers – 4 percent for South Africa, and 2 percent for Ghana – but, apart from the small hopes for Nigeria, none are predicting a win from Egypt, Morocco, Senegal or Tunisia.The same assessments are fairly similarly reflected in each of Kenya, Ghana and Tanzania.But in Nigeria and Senegal, football followers see it differently. According to 43 percent of the men of both nations, their own teams are set to win. In Nigeria, 44 percent of the women are of the same view in predicting a Nigerian win.FILE – In this Tuesday, March 27, 2018 file photo, Senegal’s Sadio Mane listens to national anthem prior to their friendly soccer match against Bosnia and Herzegovina at the Oceane stadium in Le Havre, northern France. Senegal has named its final 23-man squad for the World Cup, with Liverpool forward Sadio Mane leading a group that also includes key defender Kalidou Koulibaly of Napoli and midfielder Cheikh Kouyate of West Ham. (Francois Mori, file/Associated Press)However, the greatest patriotism and optimism vote goes to Senegalese women, 66 percent of whom are expecting Senegal to win the World Cup.“Clearly, for nations that have seen their own teams through both of the qualifying rounds, national confidence is high. But for the rest of Africa, not tied by national patriotism or influenced by the celebrations in qualifying thus far, the perspective is more global – and fans are not rating Africa’s chances too highly,” said Nick.Yet, despite the division between the ‘ins’ and the ‘outs’ on the chances of an African win, passion is running high for the event continent-wide, with more than 70 per cent of Africans planning to watch the contest, and the majority of them from home.Set to be watched by a home audience of more than 600m in Africa, and, overall, by more than 850m African viewers, the World Cup remains the continent’s largest single entertainment, drawing on football passion continent-wide, even as Africans watch with Brazil, Germany, and to a lesser extent Spain, in their sights as the likely winners.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares00002018 World CupNAIROBI, Kenya, May 24 – Africans are most expecting Brazil or Germany to win the 2018 FIFA World Cup, with very few Africans outside of the qualifying nations expecting an African team to win, according to a poll across six African nations released by GeoPoll.However, 43 percent of Nigerian are backing their own national team the Super Eagles to win and 49 percent of Senegalese think their Teranga Lions team will be the first African side to win the prestigious title.