Bird flu remains a threat as winter approaches, UK vet chiefs warn

Chief veterinary officer Professor Nigel Gibbens. Picture: YUI MOK/PA WIRE

Chief veterinary officer Professor Nigel Gibbens. Picture: YUI MOK/PA WIRE - Credit: PA

Bird flu remains a threat, particularly with the return of colder weather, poultry keepers have been warned.

Chief vets are warning keepers to take action to reduce the risk of disease following a difficult year for the sector, with avian flu confirmed in 13 kept flocks and more than 40 wild birds between December 2016 and July 2017.

UK chief veterinary officer Nigel Gibbens said: “While it is undoubtedly good news we haven’t confirmed a case in kept birds in the UK for two months, the disease remains a threat – particularly as we move again towards the colder months.

“For that reason we cannot afford to rest on our laurels and I want to remind keepers of flocks large and small to do everything they can to reduce the risk to their birds.”

Simple actions such as cleaning and disinfecting areas where birds are kept and signing up for free disease alerts helped to reduce the risk, he said.

B

Most Read

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter