Housing Order for Poultry Issued in UK

The recent outbreak of the deadly strain of avian influenza in a turkey farm in the United Kingdom prompted the country’s Department of Agriculture to activate regulations requiring all poultry and captive birds to be kept within a secure building.

It marks to be the first time the Department has issued a housing order.

Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed issued the notice, noting that the highly pathogenic H5N8 strain of the disease has been responsible for a number of outbreaks in both wild birds and poultry in several European countries since October.

Early warning system is in place with Birdwatch Ireland, the National Parks and Wildlife Service and the National Association of Regional Game Councils.

The Department activated the regulations under the Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013, requiring flock keepers to confine all poultry and birds in a secure building that can’t be accessed by wild animals.

Poultry flock owners are told to be vigilant for any signs of disease in their flocks, maintain strict bio-security measures and report any disease suspicion to their nearest Department Veterinary Office.

Bird flu’s risk to humans is considered very low as no human infection with this virus has been reported so far.

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