LCC communication - New signs are latest step in tackling bird flu

New road signs have been erected near Melton Mowbray to remind drivers of the restrictions that are in place to reduce the spread of bird flu.

The 40 warning signs are part of a series of measures being carried out by Leicestershire County Council, Rutland County Council, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) who are working together following a confirmed case of avian flu.

DEFRA brought in a 10km zone last month and during the last two weeks, Trading Standards officers have been carrying out foot patrols in the control zone, knocking on 15,000 doors to identify bird owners, provide advice and ensure all flocks are identified for inspection by the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA).

Those patrols are now complete, and Trading Standards officers are grateful for the support of bird owners in complying with the restrictions and responding to the new requirements.

From 14 December, new measures will come into force across the whole of the UK, which will make it a legal requirement for all birds to be housed – either in sheds, coops or self-contained netted areas which wild birds cannot fly into.

The new restrictions are being brought in to keep poultry separate from potentially infectious wild birds. They will apply to all bird keepers – from large commercial operations to backyard flocks with just a few hens in garden opens.

More details of the new restrictions are available at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/avian-influenza-bird-flu

Bird keepers and members of the public are being asked to report any dead wild birds to the DEFRA helpline on 03459 33 55 77 and keepers should report suspicion of disease to Animal and Plant Health Agency on 03000 200 301.

Public Health England has confirmed that the risk to public health is very low and the Food Standards Agency has said that bird flu poses a very low food safety risk for UK consumers.

The Control Zone will be in place until further notice and will be kept under regular review.

Poultry keepers and members of the public who live in the Melton Mowbray area can check whether they reside in the protection zone or the surveillance zone with the map at: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/937290/TCZ-_declaration-melton-mowbray-IP-DPR-2020-31.pdf

Posted: Fri, 11 Dec 2020 13:19 by Kathryn Staley

Tags: Avian Flu, Bird Flu, LCC