Birds: Quarantine Procedures

Date Adopted: August 26, 2020


I.  Purpose

This Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) outlines the animal care requirements associated with the daily husbandry of captive birds to ensure consistent and uniform care. This procedure applies to all personnel involved in the care of captive birds housed at the Fort Missoula Field Research Station’s (FMFRS) outdoor or indoor aviaries.

II. Policy

It is a LAR policy to meet or exceed all federal, state, and local regulations and guidelines and to comply with all institutional policies and procedures as they apply to the use of animals in research. LAR personnel or Investigators involved in husbandry and care must pass on-line animal training modules and attend applicable training in animal care and use, occupational health and safety, and equipment operation before performing activities outlined in this SOP. Animal housing rooms should be entered using appropriate personal protective gear for the species and disease or hazard containment level.

III. Quarantine Procedures for Newly Arrived Birds

Wild and domestic birds brought into the Field Research Station at Fort Missoula (FRSFM) potentially carry bacteria, viruses, parasitic, protozoal, and coccidial infections that are transmissible to other birds housed in and outside the facility. Although no laboratory testing is performed on these birds to diagnose or treat any potentially infectious diseases, attempts to mitigate transmission of diseases between the bird populations (temporary or long-term) must be made.

1.  Outdoor Aviary Quarantine

a)  Bird populations that have been housed in the indoor facility for a quarantine
      period of 14 days, have exhibited no symptoms of illness, and have been
      treated with prophylactic medications, may be moved into adjacent aviaries
      previously populated with birds.

b)  Bird populations that have not undergone quarantine procedures within the
      facility should be placed in non-adjacent aviaries for 14 days while they
      receive prophylactic medications and are monitored for signs symptoms of

c)  After a 14-day quarantine and prophylactic treatment, birds may be moved
      into aviaries adjacent to previously housed or long-term housed birds.

d)  If non-adjacent aviaries are not available due to high demand for the
      outdoor aviaries, the situation will be addressed on a case by case basis in
      consultation with the FRSFM Director, the investigators involved, and the
      Attending Veterinarian (the investigators involved will be informed of the risks
      of infection and the implications to their study).

2.  Indoor Aviary Quarantine

a)  Birds housed within the facility in housing rooms are effectively quarantined
      within the individual rooms.

b)  The HVAC system at the FRSFM does provide 30% of recirculated air, and
      there is a small risk associated with disease transmission due to fomites
      recirculated through the air vents. This risk cannot be ameliorated, and all
      investigators assume this risk when housing their birds indoors.

c)  Investigators will refrain from entering other investigator’s areas.

d)  If an investigator must enter another indoor housing area, they must wear
      shoe covers, lab coat, and nitrile gloves in order to prevent fomite
      transmission to other housing areas.