Composting is a biological heating process that results in the natural degradation of organic resources (such as poultry carcasses) by microorganisms. Composting has been successfully used throughout the United States for nearly two decades to control outbreaks of low pathogenicity avian influenza (LPAI) and highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI). Composting can be effective with most bird types and poultry house designs.
Microbial activity within a well-constructed compost pile can generate and maintain temperatures sufficient to inactivate the avian influenza virus. The effectiveness of this virus inactivation process can be assessed by evaluating compost temperatures and the shape of the time and temperature curve, visual observation of carcass decomposition, and the homogeneity of the compost mix.
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