The effect of introducing vaccinated commercial laying chickens on to farms, which previously had laying flocks that were infected with Salmonella Enteritidis, was investigated by sampling faeces and environmental samples, and in some cases spent hens. In 15 of 17 free-range flocks vaccination eliminated any evidence of infection. In 11 barn egg production flocks, vaccination produced similar results in four flocks on one farm but infection persisted in seven flocks on other farms. Vaccination of two consecutive cage layer flocks led to a gradual disappearance of the infection, but in 18 other flocks there was evidence of infection after vaccination. In one continuously occupied cage layer house, treatment by competitive exclusion was followed by a gradual disappearance of S Enteritidis in faeces and a substantial reduction in its levels in the environment. On four barn egg production sites disinfection with a formaldehyde, glutaraldehyde and quaternary ammonium compound disinfectant eliminated Salmonella species even though birds housed subsequently were not vaccinated. In three flocks that had been vaccinated for four years, S Enteritidis was still present. In most cases the poor performance of the vaccine was associated with severe rodent control problems and a poor standard of cleaning and disinfection.
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