The CDC is currently investigating several salmonella outbreaks across the country, and the culprit responsible for the spread of this disease might be in your own back yard.  The Centers for Disease Control says there is a link between humans contracting the disease and live poultry in backyard flocks.

Children and the elderly are the most susceptible to infection.  When backyard chickens come into play, it becomes extremely easy for salmonella to latch on to it's next victim.  According to the CDC's research, the potentially deadly bacteria can be found in the chicken's droppings, on the beaks, and on the feathers.  That means that anything the chickens have come into contact with (cages, coops, feed and water dishes, hay, plants, and soil) could also be contaminated.  Touching any of these things could not only spread the disease to someone who puts their hands near their face, but could also be spread to other areas like tables, doorknobs, steering wheels, etc. that have nothing to do with the chicken operation.

The best preventative measure you can take to avoid infection is washing your hands with hot water and plenty of soap.  If you have a backyard coop, check out the rest of the CDC's recommendations for keeping your family safe by clicking here.