skip to main content skip to main navigation

The Division of Animal Health maintains disease control programs to protect the health and well-being of livestock in New Jersey. The Division tracks information about emerging diseases around the world that may impact the Garden State, conducts epidemiological investigations of livestock diseases, operates an animal health diagnostic laboratory, manages two contagious equine metritis quarantine facilities for imported horses and supports an aggressive livestock welfare program.  In addition, the Division is also involved with animal emergency preparedness and response, especially during disasters that affect the health, safety and welfare of animals and their owners.


  Image of Animal Emergency Response website logo


Over-The-Counter Antibiotics Availability Changes for Livestock
The FDA has announced changes in the availability of certain antibiotics for livestock. Click here to read more.

Avian Influenza "Bird Flu"  

HPAI Online Permitting

The NJDA now has an online process for HPAI permits.

Click here for the Online HPAI Permitting Instructions

Click here for the HPAI Permit Request Form

Click here to see a list of 2022-24 confirmations of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza in commercial and backyard flocks in the U.S. 

Click here for a map of Avian Influenza cases in domestic poultry and wild birds that have been confirmed in North America.


Click here for Livestock and Poultry Import Requirements.

For States with HPAI, click here for Permitting Procedures.

Click here for the Pennsylvania HPAI address search map.


Avian influenza is a viral disease of poultry that can be of low pathogenicity (LPAI), causing mild disease with or without clinical signs, or of high pathogenicity (HPAI), causing severe disease and significant death loss. Wild birds, especially migratory waterfowl (ducks and geese) are passive carriers of the flu virus, meaning they can pass the disease along without becoming seriously ill. Avian Influenza viruses can enter the body by inhalation, ingestion or through other mucous membranes such as the conjunctiva. Feces, saliva and respiratory secretions from infected birds contain large amounts of the virus. Once introduced into a flock, the virus can spread within hours.

The New Jersey Department of Agriculture and USDA APHIS Veterinary Services conduct surveillance on commercial operations, on backyard and hobby flocks, in poultry auctions and in the live bird marketing system.

The New Jersey Department of Agriculture has an emergency response plan in place for the rapid control and elimination of the virus during outbreaks of both LPAI and HPAI. The plan includes provisions for limiting the spread of the disease through increased biosecurity including limiting the traffic to and from the infected premises, increased surveillance in designated quarantine areas, rapid turn-around time for submitted samples and depopulation and disposal for infected birds.


LPAI in chickens and turkeys resembles any other mild respiratory disease. With HPAI, birds may die suddenly without any signs of disease. Signs of HPAI may include:

  • Sudden increase in bird deaths
  • Sneezing, gasping for air, coughing and nasal discharge (runny nose)
  • Watery and/or green diarrhea
  • Lack of energy and poor appetite
  • Drop in egg production or soft- or thin-shelled misshapen eggs
  • Swelling around the eyes, neck and head
  • Purple discoloration of the wattles, combs and legs


All poultry owners, whether commercial producers or backyard enthusiasts, need to report sick or unexplained bird deaths to State/Federal officials immediately. For small flocks, this can include deaths of one bird per day for two days in a row.

For more information or to report sick or dead poultry contact: 

New Jersey Department of Agriculture, Division of Animal Health
609-671-6400 or

Report sick poultry or unexplained poultry deaths (online form)


USDA APHIS Veterinary Services NJ Area Office
609-259-5260 or toll-free at 1-866-536-7593

Dead Wild Bird – What to do next


  • USDA Wildlife Services 908-735-5654
  • NJDA 609-671-6400
  • USDA Veterinary Services 609-259-5260

Click here for handling instructions for a dead wild bird.

Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza Letter for Veterinarians

Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza Letter to Poultry Owners

Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza Letter to Live Bird Markets

Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza Letter to Poultry Distributors

Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza Disease Alert Informational Flyer


Avian influenza spreads from bird to bird, from manure, contaminated vehicles, equipment, egg flats and poultry transport crates. The virus can be transported through bird droppings on clothes or boots into poultry houses and bird pens. Help protect your birds by following these practices:

  • Minimize your flock's exposure to wild waterfowl
  • Keep poultry away from water which wild waterfowl use
  • Don’t use surface water (such as pond water) as a drinking source for your poultry
  • Always use dedicated foot wear or use disinfectant footbaths prior to entering bird pens
  • Clean up outside feed spills
  • Only allow essential workers and vehicles to enter your farm; clean and disinfect vehicle wheels before letting them drive onto and off your farm
  • Don’t lend or borrow equipment from other farms
  • Avoid visiting other poultry farms and auctions. If you do, change clothes and footwear before working with your own birds

Improving Biosecurity With Wildlife Management Practices

Preventing Access to Barns and Other Facilities

Protecting Food Resources

Reducing Water Access

For more information click here 


Secure Milk Supply

CFSPH Farm Biosecurity

USDA Influenza A Detections in Livestock

USDA VS Recommendations for Influenza A Virus in Livestock

National Milk Producers Federation Influenza A updates

Dairy Biosecurity Recommendations for HPAI

HPAI FAQs Concerning Dairy Herds

USDA VS Recommendations for HPAI in Livestock for Workers

Considerations for Hauling Manure From States That Have A Confirmed Case of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza
Avian Influenza
USDA Response Plan - The Red Book


All these, and more, can be found at the Defend the Flock Resource Center

USDA APHIS Defend the Flock

Biosecurity Practices to Protect Your Poultry 

Clean and Disinfect Equipment and Vehicles 

Protective Gear and Personnel   

Proper Cleaning Procedures Before and After Handling Birds   

Establish Perimeters and Boundaries   

Don’t Borrow Disease from Your Neighbor  

Biosecurity for Birds Keep It Clean   

Bird Health - FSA Resources for Bolstering Biosecurity

Regulatory Information 

Animal Quarantine and Embargo - N.J.A.C. 2:5

Avian Influenza Regulations - N.J.A.C. 2:9

Biological Products for Diagnostic or Therapeutic Purposes - N.J.A.C. 2:6

Disease Control Program/Reportable Disease List - N.J.A.C. 2:2

Dog and Cat Import - N.J.A.C. 8:23

Domestic Livestock Humane Investigation Complaint Form

Humane Treatment of Domestic Livestock - N.J.A.C. - 2:8

Interstate Livestock Movement Requirements

Laboratory Services - N.J.A.C. - 2:10

List of State Health Officials

Livestock and Poultry Import - N.J.A.C. 2:3

Livestock Abbreviations

2024 NJ Fair and Show Animal Health Letter

    2024 Fair Show Letter Addendum: Biosecurity for Exhibition Dairy Cattle

Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease Information

Rabies Advisory Notice

Poultry Information 

Avian Influenza 


Certified Pollorum Testing Class

Defend the Flock

Live Bird Marketing System (LBMS)

Monitored Flock

National Poultry Improvement Plan (NPIP) 

Preventing Human Salmonella Infections linked to Contact with Live Poultry

Requirements for poultry at shows and fairs

Virulent Newcastle Disease

Programs and Services

Animal Disease Traceability

Animal Disease Fact Sheets

Asian Longhorned Tick Information

BQA - Beef Quality Assurance

NJCHAP - NJ Cattle Health Assurance Program

Premise ID Request Form 

NJSAGHAP - NJ Sheep and GOAT Health Assurance Program

Additional Links

Swine Health Information 

African Swine Fever

Feral Hogs

Literature Review on Non-animal Origin Feed Ingredients

Swine Health Protection Act

USDA APHIS Swine Disease Information