Avian influenza cases confirmed: Latest news

Avian Influenza restriction sign_40088

The most recent cases of avian influenza have been confirmed in Devon, Norfolk, Dorset and North Yorkshire. This follows other recent cases in Derbyshire, Leics, Gloucs, Herefordshire, Cheshire and Kent.

 

Click on the links below to jump to details of a specific case.

HPAI H5N8 Exmouth, Devon (29 December 2020)
HPAI H5N8 Watton, Norfolk (28 December 2020)
HPAI H5N8 Attleborough, Norfolk (26 December 2020)
HPAI H5N8 Gillingham, Dorset (19 December 2020)
HPAI H5N8 Attleborough, Norfolk (19 December 2020)
HPAI H5N1 Hawes, North Yorkshire (17 December 2020)
HPAI H5N8 Sanday, Orkney (17 December 2020)
HPAI H5N8 Willington, Derbyshire (15 December 2020)
HPAI H5N8 Droitwich Spa, Worcestershire (13 December 2020)
HPAI H5N8 King’s Lynn, Norfolk (5 December 2020)
HPAI H5N8 Attleborough, Norfolk (4 December 2020)
HPAI H5N8 Northallerton, North Yorkshire (3 December 2020)
HPAI H5N8 Northallerton, North Yorkshire (28 November 2020)
HPAI H5N8 Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire (21 November 2020)
HPAI H5N8 Stroud, Gloucestershire (19 November 2020)
HPAI H5N8 Leominster, Herefordshire (10 November 2020)
HPAI H5N8 Frodsham, Cheshire (2 November 2020)
LPAI H5N2 Deal, Kent (2 November 2020)

 

On the 29 December 2020 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza H5N8 was confirmed in backyard poultry at a premises near Exmouth, Devon. All birds will be humanely culled. A 3km Protection Zone and 10km Surveillance Zone has been declared around the premises (shown on the map below). 

Exmouth avian influenza PZ and SZ map Dec 2020_76408

On the 28 December 2020 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza H5N8 was confirmed in rearing ducks at a premises near Watton, Breckland, Norfolk. All birds will be humanely culled. A 3.4km Protection Zone and 10.4km Surveillance Zone has been declared around the premises (shown on the map below).  

Ickburgh avian influenza December 2020 PZ & SZ map_76393

On the 26 December 2020 Avian Influenza H5N8 was confirmed in non-commercial captive birds (non-poultry premises) near Attleborough, Breckland, Norfolk. On the 28 December further testing confirmed this to be a highly pathogenic strain (HPAI H5N8). All birds on the infected premises have been humanely culled. A 3km Protection Zone and 10km Surveillance Zone has been declared around the premises (shown on the map below).

Attleborough avian influenza HPAI PZ &SZ map 28 Dec 2020_76394

On the 19 December 2020 a case of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza H5N8 was confirmed in backyard poultry near Gillingham, Dorset. All poultry on the premises will be humanely culled. A 3km Protection Zone and 10km Surveillance Zone was declared around the premises. Following successful disease control measures the 3km Protection Zone was revoked on 11 January 2021 and merged with the 10km Surveillance Zone (shown on map below).

Gillingham Dorset AI SZ 11-01-21_76554

On the 19 December 2020 Avian Influenza H5N8 was confirmed in a commercial duck breeding premises near Attleborough, Breckland, Norfolk. Further testing confirmed this to be a Highly Pathogenic strain. All poultry on the premises will be humanely culled. A 3km Protection Zone and 10km Surveillance Zone have been declared around the premises (see map below).

Map HPAI Attleborough Zones 20-12-20_76266

On 17 December 2020 a case of Avian Influenza H5N1 was confirmed in a backyard flock of chickens near Hawes, Richmondshire, North Yorkshire. Testing later confirmed this to be a Highly Pathogenic strain and further genetic sequencing has confirmed that this is the same virus being found in wild birds and the UK, and not the strain that has previously caused human infections outside of Europe. The Temporary Control Zones and Temporary Movement Restriction Zone were both revoked and replaced by a 3km Protection Zone and 10km Surveillance Zone on 22 December 2020. Following successful completion of disease control activities and surveillance within the zone, the Protection Zone was revoked on 10 January and the area merged with the Surveillance Zone (shown on the map below).

Hawes PZ merge avian influenza map_76550

Within the Protection and Surveillance Zones, different controls are in place to prevent the spread of disease. These include restrictions on the movement of poultry and captive birds, carcasses, eggs, used poultry litter and manure. Poultry keepers in the Protection and Surveillance Zones can now use a number of general licenses that have been made available for certain movements and/or apply for movement licences for some specific movements from or into the Zone. There are also restrictions on bird gatherings (fairs, shows, exhibitions) and the release of game birds. Further information on the restrictions within Disease Control Zones can be found here. 

On 17 December 2020 a case of Avian Influenza H5N8 was confirmed in a small commercial free range laying flock on Sanday island, Orkney. Further testing confirmed this to be a Highly Pathogenic strain and a 3km Protection Zone and 10km Surveillance Zone have been declared. Following completion of preliminary cleansing and disinfection and mandatory surveillance requirements Scottish Ministers declared the end of the Protection Zone on 12 January 2021. The area which formed the Protection Zone has now become part of the Surveillance Zone.  The latest Avian Influenza updates for Scotland can be found on the Scottish Government website.

On 15 December 2020 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) H5N8 was confirmed in captive birds and poultry at a premises near Willington, South Derbyshire. A 3km Protection Zone and a 10km Surveillance Zone have been put in place around the infected premises to limit the risk of the disease spreading. Following successful completion of disease control activities and surveillance within the zones, the 10km Surveillance Zone was revoked on the 17 January 2021. Local movement restrictions have now been removed but the Avian Influenza Prevention Zone measures remain in place.

On 13 December 2020 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza H5N8 was confirmed in captive birds (non-poultry premises) in a wild bird rescue near Droitwich Spa, Wychavon, Worcestershire. All birds on the premises have been humanely culled to prevent the spread of the disease. 

On 5 December 2020 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) H5N8 was confirmed in rearing turkeys at a premises near King’s Lynn, Norfolk. All birds on the infected premises have been humanely culled to limit the spread of the disease. 3km Protection and 10km Surveillance Zones were put in place around the infected premises. The Protection Zone was revoked on 10 January and the area merged with the Surveillance Zone. Following successful completion of disease control activities and surveillance the 10km Surveillance Zone was revoked on 16 January 2021 and local movement restrictions lifted. National Avian Influenza Prevention Zone measures remain in place.

On 4 December 2020 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) H5N8 was confirmed in rearing turkeys at a premises near Attleborough in Norfolk. All birds on the infected premises have been humanely culled to limit the spread of the disease. A 3km Protection and 10km Surveillance Zone have been put in place around the infected premises. On 9 January 2021 the 3km Protection Zone was revoked and merged with the 10km Surveillance Zone. Following successful completion of disease control activities and surveillance the 10km Surveillance Zone was revoked on 16 January 2021 and local movement restrictions lifted. National Avian Influenza Prevention Zone measures remain in place.

On the 3 December 2020 Avian Influenza (HPAI) H5N8 was confirmed at a second premises which rears turkeys near Northallerton, North Yorkshire. All birds on the infected premises have been humanely culled to limit the spread of the disease. Following successful completion of disease control activities and surveillance within the zone, the Protection Zone was revoked on 29 December and the area merged with the Surveillance Zone. Following successful completion of disease control activities the 10km Surveillance Zone was lifted on 7 January 2021. National Avian Influenza Prevention Zone measures remain in place.

On the 28 November 2020 Avian Influenza H5N8 was confirmed in rearing turkeys at a premises near Northallerton, Hambleton, North Yorkshire. On the 29 November 2020 further testing confirmed this to be a Highly Pathogenic strain (HPAI H5N8). All birds on the infected premises have been humanely culled to limit the spread of the disease.  Following successful completion of disease control activities and surveillance within the zone, the Protection Zone was revoked on 29 December 2020 and the area merged with the Surveillance Zone (shown on the map below). Following successful completion of disease control activities the 10km Surveillance Zone was lifted on 7 January 2021. National Avian Influenza Prevention Zone measures remain in place.

On 21 November 2020 Avian Influenza H5N8 was confirmed in poultry and captive birds at a premises near Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire. This was later confirmed as HPAI and a 3km Protection Zone and a 10km Surveillance Zone were put in place around the premises. On the 25 December 2020, following successful completion of disease control activities and surveillance within the zone, the Surveillance Zone declared on the 17 December 2020 was revoked. Local movement restrictions are removed from 2.30pm on the 25 December 2020 but the Avian Influenza Prevention Zone measures remain in place.

On 19 November 2020 H5N8 Avian Influenza was confirmed in captive birds at a non-poultry premises near Stroud in Gloucestershire. This was later confirmed as HPAI and a 3km Captive Bird (Monitoring) Controlled Zone was put in place around the site. Following successful disease control activities and surveillance the 3km Captive Bird (Monitoring) Controlled Zone was revoked on 18 December.

On 10 November 2020, Highly Pathogenic H5N8 Avian Influenza was confirmed on a broiler breeder farm near Leominster in Herefordshire. Defra announced a cull of all birds on site, and declared a 3km Protection Zone and a 10km Surveillance Zone around the infected premises. On 9 December 2020, the 3km Protection Zone was lifted, and replaced with a single 10km Surveillance Zone. Following successful control and surveillance activities the 10km Surveillance Zone was lifted on 18 December 2020, and local movement restrictions have now been removed.

On 11 November 2020 a nationwide Avian Influenza Prevention Zone (AIPZ) was announced for England, Wales, and Scotland. 

Chief Veterinary Officer Christine Middlemiss said:

“Whether you keep just a few birds or thousands, you are now legally required to meet enhanced biosecurity requirements and this is in your interests to do, to protect your birds from this highly infectious disease.”

On 6 November 2020 the risk level of Avian Influenza incursion in wild birds in Great Britain was raised from 'medium' to 'high', and in poultry from 'low' to 'medium' following two unrelated confirmed cases in the UK, and increasing reports of the disease in the Netherlands and Germany. Northern Ireland’s risk of avian influenza incursion remains 'medium' for wild birds and 'low' for poultry, but is being kept under constant review. 

A statement from the UK’s four Chief Veterinary Officers said:

“We have acted quickly to prevent the spread of disease at both sites in England and are continuing to monitor the situation closely. Bird keepers should remain alert for any signs of disease, report suspected disease immediately and ensure they implement heightened biosecurity measures on their premises. 

“It is important now more than ever that bird keepers ensure they are doing all they can to maintain and strengthen good biosecurity on their premises to ensure we prevent further outbreaks.” 

Biosecurity measures

There are some simple measures that all poultry keepers, whether they are running a large commercial farm, keeping a few hens in their back garden, or rearing game birds, should take to protect their birds against the threat of avian flu in the coming winter months. 

These include: 

  • Keeping the area where birds live clean and tidy, controlling rats and mice and regularly cleansing and disinfecting any hard surfaces; 
  • Cleaning footwear before and after visits;
  • Placing birds’ feed and water in fully enclosed areas that are protected from wild birds, and removing any spilled feed regularly; 
  • Putting fencing around outdoor areas where birds are allowed and limiting their access to ponds or areas visited by wild waterfowl;
  • Where possible, avoid keeping ducks and geese with other poultry species. 

Where can I get further information?

    On 2 November 2020 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza H5N8 was identified on a commercial broiler breeder rearing site near Frodsham, Cheshire. Testing has now confirmed it is a Highly Pathogenic strain related to the H5N8 cases reported in Europe in October. The flock of approximately 13,000 birds has been culled and a 3km Protection Zone and 10km Surveillance Zone were put in place around the infected premises. On 6 December 2020 the 3km and 10km Zones were revoked and all movement restrictions lifted.

    You can check if you are in a Protection or Surveillance Zone by using the APHA’s interactive map.

    Confirmation of the outbreak in Cheshire followed an unrelated case of Low Pathogenic H5N2 confirmed in a poultry flock near Deal, in Kent on 2 November 2020. The flock of 480 birds were culled and a 1km Restricted Zone was put in place around the infected premise. Following successful completion of disease control activities and surveillance within the Zone, the 1km Restricted Zone was revoked on 17 December 2020 and movement restrictions lifted.

    NFU chief poultry adviser Aimee Mahony said:

    “The NFU remains in close dialogue with both Defra and the Animal and Plant Health Agency on this issue and we are working to support any members affected by these cases of avian influenza.

    “In light of the new Avian Influenza Prevention Zone introduced by Defra, I would urge all poultry keepers, including members of the public with pet birds, a backyard flock or smallholding, to continue practising enhanced biosecurity at all times. It’s crucial everyone remains vigilant and reports any signs of disease in their birds at the earliest opportunity.

    “The risk to public health from this virus is very low and the Food Standards Agency has also made it clear that it does not pose a food safety risk.”

    Available support

    In these uncertain and often challenging times it is more important than ever to look after our own and others’ mental health.

    If you or anyone you know are experiencing anxiety or stress then help and support is available nationally via the Farming Community Network (FCN) and Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution (RABI) websites.

    The Prince’s Countryside Fund has also published a directory of local farm and rural support groups.

    More information:

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