Biology Reference
In-Depth Information
5.4.3 Structure and implementation of the System
The USDA APHIS AZA Management Guidelines for Avian Influenza
Surveillance Plan will initially be open only to AZA-accredited institutions,
though, if necessary, the program could be made available to other zoo-
logical institutions and animal exhibitors as defined by the Animal Welfare
Act.* Participation in the system is voluntary and will offer several benefits
to zoological institutions. In addition to free sampling materials and diag-
nostic testing, participating zoos will be integrated into the system frame-
work such that they can easily participate in surveillance for future diseases
of concern, providing them with an early warning of local disease introduc-
tion. Furthermore, the surveillance system is only one of three components
of these management guidelines. The two others include outbreak manage-
ment and vaccination plans. By participating in the surveillance component,
zoological institutions will also be given assistance in creating an outbreak
management plan tailored to their facility and will be eligible to apply to
their State Veterinarian for avian influenza vaccination.
The surveillance system combines both active and passive surveillance
methods to detect avian influenza viruses in zoo birds. The active compo-
nent is based on a statistically derived sample number to ensure with 95%
confidence that the disease would be detected if it were present. For this
system, a maximum of 25 birds per month could be sampled at each insti-
tution. Consistent with the disease ecology of avian influenza, sampling of
Anseriformes, Charadriiformes, and Ciconiiformes are preferable, though the
choice of birds to sample is at the individual zoo veterinarian's discretion. The
passive component includes sampling of sick and dead birds in the zoo's ani-
mal collection. Additionally, if the participating zoological institution acquires
the appropriate permits required by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, samples
could be taken from sick, injured, or dead wild birds found on zoo grounds.
Sampling methodology for avian influenza follows that of the NVSL of the
USDA, including oropharyngeal and cloacal swabbing. Additionally, inter-
mittent serum collection is requested in order to allow for longitudinal data
collection on seroconversion events. Diagnostic testing will be performed by
laboratories in the NAHLN system of the USDA.
Data collection and storage will take place through a password-protected
online data entry portal on the ZAHN Web site. The data will be housed in
a secure server at LPZ. Each participating institution will have its own user-
name and password to log on and enter the basic information for each sam-
ple sent to the NAHLN laboratory. Data entry screens will also be present
* An overview of the Animal Welfare Act:
Per the current draft of the USDA APHIS Vaccination Plan for HPAI for AZA Zoos, institu-
tions must be conducting surveillance prior to being given permission to vaccinate animals
in their collection for avian influenza.
The Migratory Bird Treaty Act:
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