North Carolina Prepared for Avian Influenza

“We started in march and took trips to Minnesota and Iowa and set a plan in motion and are at a point where those plans are finalizing.

We learned how to attack a house differently. We go into a site where there is an infection with birds in different states of the disease. How do we deal with them swiftly and effectively and deal humanely with the health of the birds.

The benefit is that we have had months to prepare and those in other states didn’t have that luxury. We have been able to learn from their experiences.

We would have good capacity had the prior incidents in other states not happened. But we could not put birds down within 24 hours and dispose within 72 hours without that knowledge. We learned tighter biosecurity and lateral spread and humans moving the virus were important for us to learn.

We are very confident in our team and if we fear this then we won’t be as quick to react. We believe that we can handle 15 sites or 70 poultry houses within 24-48 hours with the teams and equipment we have now.”


A native of the Texas Panhandle, Rhonda was born and raised on a cotton farm where she saw cotton farming evolve from ditch irrigation to center pivot irrigation and harvest trailers to modules. After graduating from Texas Tech University, she got her start in radio with KGNC News Talk 710 in Amarillo, Texas.