Since 3 November, highly pathogenic Avian Influenza of subtype H5N8 has been found in dead wild birds in Europe and Russia. These outbreaks have affected various wild bird species including some species of ducks, gull species, wild geese, wild swans and various other wild waterfowl and raptors. However, this is not an avian influenza outbreak.
The Secretary of State for the Department for the Environment Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has declared England to be an Avian Influenza Prevention Zone (AIPZ). The AIPZ requires the keepers of poultry and captive birds to implement a number of measures to minimise UK domestic bird contact with wild birds (or anything else potentially contaminated by wild birds) that may carry the Avian Influenza virus.
The council has put together a guide to the AIPZ which includes information on the require measures that poultry and bird keepers must put in place as well as the symptoms of avian influenza in birds and how to report any suspected cases of the virus.
Poultry keepers across Great Britain must now keep chickens, hens, ducks, and turkeys housed where practicable, or keep them separate from wild birds by some other means. For farmed geese, game birds and other captive birds where housing is less practicable, keepers must take other steps to keep them separate from wild birds.
More information on the AIPZ can be found by visiting the DEFRA AIPZ information webpage.