Public Health Agency investigating more salmonella cases in Western Canada

More people in Western Canada have become sick with salmonella linked to live chicks from an Alberta hatchery.

EDMONTON — More people in Western Canada have become sick with salmonella linked to live chicks from an Alberta hatchery.

The Public Health Agency of Canada says it is investigating 41 cases of people becoming ill, including seven people who have been hospitalized.

The agency says they became sick between April 5 and May 23.

Everyone has either recovered or is recovering.

There are 22 cases in Alberta, 14 in British Columbia, four in Saskatchewan and one in Manitoba.

The agency says everyone who became ill handled live baby chicks, turkeys or goslings.

“Many individuals reported purchasing live poultry by mail order or from feed supply storefronts for backyard flocks to produce eggs or meat,” the agency said in a release Wednesday.

People are being warned to always wash their hands after handling live birds. The agency advises that children under the age of five, pregnant women, the elderly and those with weaker immune systems are at most risk.

Symptoms of salmonella bacteria infection include fever, chills, diarrhea, abdominal cramps, headache, nausea and vomiting.

People can get infected from a bird, its droppings or from where it lives.

The agency says Alberta Agriculture is leading the animal-health investigation and the hatchery involved has sent letters to customers who ordered live poultry between March 1 and May 5.

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