Educational Video Recordings

Gary J. Wyatt
Extension Educator, Agroforestry
University of Minnesota Extension
Regional Extension Office

Wyatt, G.J.*1, , Noll, S.2, , Robinson Favorito, A.3, , Neu Schuft, A.4, , Zamora, D.5, , Current, D.6, , Janni, K.7, , Reichenbach, M.8,
1 Extension Educator, Agroforestry, University of Minnesota Extension, Mankato, MN, 56001
2 Extension Animal Scientist - Turkey, University of Minnesota Extension, St. Paul, MN, 55108
3 Multimedia Communications Specialist, Wild Carrot Productions, St. Paul, MN, 56001
4 Extension Educator - Poultry, University of Minnesota Extension, St. Paul, MN, 56001
5 Extension Educator - Agroforestry, University of Minnesota Extension, St. Paul, MN, 56001
6 Director - CINRAM, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN, 55108
7 Extension Ag Engineer, University of Minnesota Extension, St. Paul, MN, 55108
8 Extension Educator - Forestry, University of Minnesota Extension, Cloquet, MN, 55720

In the spring of 2015, more than 9 million birds in Minnesota's primarily commercial poultry flocks died or were euthanized to prevent the spread of the avian influenza disease.  The state verified 108 outbreaks among chicken, turkey and mixed-poultry flocks in 23 counties.  With a grant from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, researchers and Extension from the University of Minnesota have collaborated to assess research priorities for addressing avian influenza and to identify research/Extension projects that directly address the causes of avian influenza, the reasons some fowl are more susceptible, and the prevention measures that can be taken.  Our research objective was to prevent disease transmission using vegetative windbreaks.  The research team has conducted a literature review of vegetative windbreaks as it relates to turkey disease control.  Surveys have been conducted among turkey farmers (with and without windbreaks) and Soil and Water Conservation District / Natural Resources Conservation Service (SWCD/NRCS) staff to determine the benefits and challenges of windbreaks near turkey barns; setback distances; and tree and shrub species.  Mammals and birds were also monitored around the barns, at selected turkey barns by trail cams to evaluate what wild animals were coming close to the turkey barns.  Our findings concluded that windbreaks provide multiple benefits to poultry operations and windbreaks do mitigate dust and some particles (which could have disease organisms) but we could not document disease control with windbreaks.  Educational fact sheets, videos and teaching modules will be created to inform farmers and the industry of the best management practices for use of windbreaks near turkey barns.  The results and findings of this research project were used to create this video which is being shared with turkey growers in Minnesota through University of Minnesota Extension and the Minnesota Turkey Growers Association.  More research is needed to determine if windbreaks can be a positive barrier in mitigating poultry diseases.