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Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza
Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza

Sample Collection and Guidelines

HPAI continues to be a concern throughout the US. We are providing the following guidelines on submitting samples to the Ohio ADDL for Avian Influenza testing.


Appropriate swabs

  • Sterile, Dacron®/polyester swabs, rayon swabs, or nylon swabs - all with plastic or wire shafts
  • Swabs with flocked ends are preferred over regular swabs for their superior absorption and quick release
  • Avoid cotton or calcium alginate swabs, or swabs with wooden shafts

For gallinaceous birds (chickens, turkeys, pheasants, quail), take oropharyngeal/tracheal(choanal cleft) (OP/TR) swabs

For domestic waterfowl (ducks, geese), take cloacal (CL) swabs

Pooling: Swabs from the same species, source, and flock can be pooled together

  • Up to 5 swabs can be pooled in a standard BHI broth tube containing 2.5-5mL of media

Do NOT pool:

  • OP/TR and CL swabs together, or swabs from different species, or swabs from different flocks/barns

Recommended Swab and Media Resources:

  • Fisher Scientific - BD sterile flocked swabs Cat. No 22-349-820. 1-800-766-7000
  • Sterile BHI broth, other sterile viral transport media, or as a last resort saline (contact solution)
  • Hardy Diagnostics - 5ml sterile BHI broth tubes, Cat. No. K27. 1-800-266-2222


Hand deliver or ship each sample set on ice using a same day or next day delivery service to arrive Monday through Friday to the following address: 

Ohio Department of Agriculture
Division of Animal Health
Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory (ADDL)
8995 E Main Street, Bldg. 6
Reynoldsburg, OH 43068

When submitting samples, please indicate on the form F-ADDL-ADM-251 if you suspect flu, or if it is routine surveillance. In the event of an outbreak of HPAI, a specific and simplified form is available. 

Please let the laboratory know samples are coming (1-614-728-6220). Walk-ins are welcome (Hours are Monday-Friday 8:00 am to 5:00 pm). After-hour emergency calls regarding testing and sample submission can be made to the Animal Health After-Hours Line at (888) 456-3405.


Please fill out the F-ADDL-ADM-251 form for suspect cases or if there is an outbreak, the HPAI Submission Form, F-ADDL-ADM-1097 completely. The following information is required:

  • Owner/Premise name
  • Premise ID and/or animal location (county level data - very important)
  • Collection date
  • Production type (backyard, commercial, etc.)
  • Species
  • Sample type

Video Examples

Avian Influenza sampling on a live bird
Avian Influenza sampling on a dead bird
Avian Influenza sample shipping