England reports H5N8 avian influenza case in North Yorkshire, 6th recent case

Avian influenza is a notifiable disease and any suspicion should be reported immediately

More than 10,000 turkeys will be culled at a farm in Yorkshire in England following a bird flu outbreak.

The risk to human health from bird flu is low, as is the food safety risk from poultry products.

The discovery was made at a turkey fattening site near Northallerton on Saturday, with Defra confirming it to be the H5N8 strain of the avian flu.

Further cases of AI have been detected in over 100 wild birds across Great Britain with five cases of the H5N8 strain being confirmed in commercial premises in England.

A temporary control area is in place - a 1.9-mile protection zone immediately around the area of the outbreak as well as a 6.2-mile surveillance zone.

All 10,500 birds at the farm in Northallerton will be humanely culled to limit the spread of the disease.

The findings confirm that the avian flu virus is now circulating in the wild bird population in Ireland, which poses a risk to our poultry flocks and industry.

Dr. Huey continued, "I am urging all flock keepers, even if you keep just one bird, to take action now to improve biosecurity in order to prevent an incursion of the disease into our poultry flock".

The government said there was not anticipated to be any impact on the supplies of turkeys or other birds over Christmas.

"We are urgently looking for any evidence of disease spread associated with this farm to control and eliminate it".

According to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) H5N8 has also been identified in wild birds in Gloucestershire, Devon, Dorset, Lancashire and Lincolnshire, with reports last week that swans had been found spinning in circles and discharging blood from their nostrils.

The Food Standards Agency has still advised those cooking meat to ensure they do so properly.

These Regulations require specific biosecurity measures to be implemented by the keepers of all poultry (and other captive bird) flocks, irrespective of size, to help mitigate the risk of the virus and additional enhanced biosecurity measures that must be implemented in flocks of 500 birds or more.

H5N8 avian influenza is now circulating in wild birds and poultry in Europe, Central Asia and the Middle East, causing clinical signs in affected birds.



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