Poultry shows a no-go at 2022 Colorado State Fair | TheFencePost.com

Poultry shows a no-go at 2022 Colorado State Fair

PUEBLO, Colo. — Upon guidance from the Colorado State Veterinarian, the Colorado State Fair board authority has made the determination to cancel any poultry shows during the 2022 fair. This precautionary measure is being taken as highly pathogenic avian influenza continues to affect domestic poultry across the nation. The board approved the cancellation during their regular board meeting on Wednesday, May 25, 2022.

“For the safety of both humans and animals participating in the Colorado State Fair, the board of authority has voted to follow the guidance of the Colorado State Veterinarian and not hold any poultry events where commingling of birds could occur,” said Rene Brown, the chair of the Colorado State Fair board of authority. “This was a very difficult decision, since we know kids look forward to raising and showing their chickens and turkeys, but as cases of avian influenza continue to rise across the country, we first and foremost want to assure the safety of everyone who attends and enjoys the Colorado State Fair.”

Highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) has affected nearly 38 million birds in domestic flocks across 36 states. In Colorado, cases have been identified in both wild and domestic flocks. More than 1.4 million birds in Colorado alone have been euthanized to avoid the spread of this deadly viral disease, which has a mortality rate of 90%-100%.

“While this is certainly a huge loss for the kids who show their poultry, commingling of birds presents a high risk of disease introduction and transmission and would be devastating if an outbreak were to happen during the fair,” said Colorado State Veterinarian Dr. Maggie Baldwin. “CDA will continue to monitor the spread of avian influenza and work with county fairs, youth ag organizations, and local veterinarians to ensure bird owners know how to increase their biosecurity measures to protect their flocks.”

The Colorado State Fair will still feature horse shows and hold the livestock events for cattle, sheep, goats, and swine, as well as the small animal events for rabbits. The 4-H and FFA events will also take place.

In addition to animal shows, the Colorado State Fair also hosts General Entry and Fine Arts competitions. The Fine Arts Exhibition is one of the longest-running and finest traditions of the Colorado State Fair. It provides an unmatched opportunity for both emerging artists and professional artists from around the state to participate in a quality exhibition.

General Entry offers judged competitions in baking, canning, sewing, crocheting, quilting, agriculture, arts and crafts, beer and wine, fine arts, and more! Thousands of entries are submitted each year that showcase the best of Colorado. Check out the Special Contest page for sponsored competitions and fun contests for children, including two Pet Rock competitions, Funniest Pet Photo contest, and a poetry competition.

This will be the 150th Colorado State Fair, and additional celebratory events will be announced later this summer. The first fair in Colorado was held in 1872, before Colorado became a state, and was organized by the Southern Colorado Agricultural and Industrial Association. Since then, the fair has been held in Pueblo every year except 1918, when the fairgrounds were used for military training of troops during World War I.

For more information about HPAI, including most recent detections and description of cases, please visit ag.colorado.gov/hpai or the USDA website.


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