The RSPB has called for long-term monitoring, research and response plans to tackle the impact of bird flu as cases were discovered earlier in the year at Suffolk wildlife spots.

Over the winter there were some confirmed cases at Minsmere RSPB, while there were also suspected cases at Havergate Island in 2023.

At the present time, however, both sites have said that they have had no confirmed cases.

This may be due to the virus behaving "very differently" compared to last year. the RSPB said.

An RSPB spokesman said of the discoveries: "This is the third year the current strain has impacted wild birds in the UK.

"From March, we saw mass die-offs of breeding Black-headed Gulls across England, Wales and Northern Ireland, including at several RSPB sites.

"The virus is unpredictable, and we need long-term monitoring, research and response plans to tackle its impact.

"We also need the governments of the UK to urgently publish their long overdue Seabird Conservation Strategies to address wider marine challenges and relieve the mounting pressure on seabirds.

"Whilst the risk to human health is low, members of the public are advised not to touch any visibly sick or dead birds."

In total, 77 species have tested positive so far across the UK including 21 out of 25 of the UK's breeding seabirds, as well as geese, ducks, swans and birds of prey such as buzzards and peregrine falcons.

In Suffolk poultry farmers have also been wary of the flu, with a national bird flu housing order issued in November last year as outbreaks throughout the county rocketed.

Suffolk became a hotbed for the disease in autumn 2022, leading to a regional lockdown across the county, Norfolk and parts of Essex.