Very virulent infectious bursal disease virus (vvIBDV) was diagnosed in a pullet farm in Washington in 2014. Infectious bursal disease virus is resistant to many environmental stresses and often persists on farms for months. There have been conflicting reports as to whether composting can destroy vvIBDV in the manure. This project investigated the composting of litter from the affected house using an aerated static pile to inactivate the virus. Two weeks before the affected pullet flocks were moved to the layer house, specific-pathogen-free (SPF) birds were placed in the barns. Ten days after they were placed, three SPF birds died and were positive for vvIBDV. Thirty percent of the SPF birds were positive for vvIBDV. After the pullets were moved, at 20 wk of age, the litter in the house was composted using the aerated static pile method. The pile was maintained at above 55 C for 4 wk. After this time, 30 additional SPF birds were placed on the composted material. Two weeks later, the birds were healthy and there was no evidence of vvIBDV. The subsequent pullet flock did not break with vvIBDV. These results demonstrate that this composting method can be used to decontaminate the litter from vvIBDV and help prevent the spread of vvIBDV.
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