NZ Lifestyle Block

Salmonella is carried by wild birds, rodents, and even flies.

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bacteria can appear healthy and clean,” Davison says. “Always err on the side of caution.”

Have coop shoes (or boots)

Ideally, have a special pair of shoes to wear while taking care of poultry. Don't bring them inside the house.

Keep bad eggs at bay

Eggs also need special care and attention. Ideally, always have clean nesting material, so eggs can't get mucky, and plenty of nests to avoid accidental damage.

“Collect eggs often," says Davison. "Eggs that sit in the nest for too long become dirty or break, increasing the risk of infection. If you do find cracked eggs, throw them away immediatel­y. Germs can more easily enter an egg through a cracked shell, putting you at risk.”

Ideally, you want clean nest boxes so eggs never get dirty. But if they do, don't wash them just after they're laid.

“Don't wash warm, fresh eggs because colder water can pull germs into the egg,” Davison says.

She recommends storing eggs in the fridge to prolong freshness and slow the growth of pathogens such as salmonella.

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