UK declared Bird Flu Free!
The UK has now been declared free of avian influenza after a series of confirmed outbreaks throughout late 2016 and early 2017 of the H5N8 strain.
Despite the declaration, the disease continues to circulate throughout Europe with new outbreaks still be confirmed throughout the summer of 2017. The risk to UK poultry flocks is likely to rise this coming winter as migratory birds travel across the continent from Eastern Asia, potentially settling in the UK. For this reason, the Chief Veterinary Officer, Nigel Gibbons, calls for all poultry keepers, backyard enthusiasts through to commercial enterprises, to remain vigilant in knowing the signs of this disease and implementing throughout and stringent biosecurity measures.
It is likely that the government will implement similar measures to last year in an attempt to minimise the likelihood of a UK outbreak, including temporary housing orders and bans on bird gatherings.
Declaring the UK free from avian influenza means trade discussions on UK poultry and poultry products can restart with existing and potential new trading partners. The government continues to carry out surveillance in poultry and wild birds and publish regular disease updates.
Avivets offer advice and guidance on biosecurity measures and contingency planning regarding avian influenza as well as welfare control measures during temporary housing orders. If you are concerned about the impact of avian influenza on your poultry flock you can contact Avivets to discuss further on 01925 344244.