Abstract Proper vaccination with validated companion differentiation of infected from vaccinated animals (DIVA) tests using a vaccine containing a heterologous neuraminidase to the field virus can be effective to control avian influenza (AI). However, indirect immunofluorescent assay, the only field validated DIVA test, has limitations to be set up as high throughput screening test and the assay requires subjective interpretation of the results. To apply the DIVA strategy to the Korean H9N2 low pathogenic AI (LPAI) vaccine program and overcome these limitations, we generated a reassortant H9N8 virus (rgH9N8) vaccine using plasmid-based reverse genetics and developed a novel N2-specific enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (N2-ELISA). The rgH9N8 vaccine showed adequate immunogenicity and protection, and the optimized N2-ELISA showed that the sensitivity was 97.0% and specificity was 96.4% compared with a hemagglutination inhibition test. In vaccination-challenge experiments in specific pathogen-free chickens, the sera of chickens vaccinated with rgH9N8 vaccine and uninfected were negative by the N2-ELISA (S/P ≤ 0.4), whereas infected sera with H9N2 were positive (S/P > 0.4). These results suggest that the rgH9N8 vaccine and the companion DIVA test, N2-ELISA, allow the utilization of the DIVA strategy for the control of H9N2 LPAI infections in Korea.