HEALTH

Salmonella cases in Utah linked to backyard poultry

Jul 2, 2024, 8:32 AM | Updated: 8:34 am

Two chickens are pictured. Salmonella outbreak linked to backyard poultry like chicken...

Chickens wander in the backyard of Curt Cutler in Woods Cross. (Jeffrey D. Allred/Deseret News)

(Jeffrey D. Allred/Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — Some salmonella cases in Utah have been linked to backyard chickens. 

While backyard poultry can seem healthy and clean, it can still carry salmonella germs.

Epidemiologist with the Utah Department of Health Delaney Moore said not to let them near your mouth.

“You want to make sure that you aren’t kissing or snuggling your backyard poultry,” she said. “I know baby chicks are so cute, but you don’t want to get those germs near your mouth.”

Moore said to always supervise kids when they are near the birds. 

If you get eggs, be careful about washing them. Should they touch water, they will need to be refrigerated, according to Successful Farming. However, if they don’t they can remain on the counter at room temperature for a couple of weeks. 

It should be noted that all store-bought eggs should be refrigerated. Organic Valley said this is because they are washed before they make their way to consumers. 

Washing eggs removes the cuticle, a natural layer outside of the shell that keeps bacteria out. 

“If you’re looking at eggs that someone has given you if any of the eggs are cracked, throw them away,” she said. “We recommend that you brush eggs off with a brush or a cloth.”

Salmonella cases spike every year between Easter and the end of summer.

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Salmonella cases in Utah linked to backyard poultry