Bird flu warning at ‘extraordinary’ level in UK

The UKthe chief veterinarian issued a alert about a “phenomenal level” of Avian flu in the county.

Tens of thousands of farms bird have been culled and the current number of confirmed facilities, 38, is the UK’s largest ever.

The UK’s chief veterinary officer Christine Middlemiss told the BBC the “extraordinary scale” of bird flu would have been “giant humans, animal and commercial impacts”.

She said the disease was being spread by migratory birds returning from northern Russia and Eastern Europe, and said further studies were needed to prevent a worse outbreak in the future. future.

She also says that lessons learned from the 2001 foot-and-mouth disease are being used to try to control the outbreak.

The risk to human health is low, but infected poultry should not be touched. The supply of eggs at supermarkets is unlikely to be affected as the number of affected farms is low compared to the overall egg production.

The UK is also just a few weeks away from migration season, which usually lasts until March.

“We will need to maintain this high level of biosecurity throughout that time,” said Dr Middlemiss.

“We can’t wait for another year and an even bigger outbreak. So we’ll be working not only with our scientists, but also internationally, to understand more of what we can do about what’s behind it. “

An avian influenza prevention zone was announced across the UK on November 3. It was extended on November 29, requiring all bird owners to keep the animal indoors. .

Dr Middlemiss assured customers that there wouldn’t be any food supply problems due to the flu outbreak, but added: “It’s been devastating for the individual companies involved. The people who keep the yard are also very sad.”

The 38 affected facilities include bird yards, small flocks raised in gardens, and several large commercial farms.

The first detection of the pathogenic H5N1 strain was found at a swan sanctuary in Worcester on October 15.

Peregrine falcons, curls and barnacle geese are now just some of the wild birds that have died from the outbreak.

In November, dead swans were found near the Diglis Basin in Worcester.

RSPB said: “People should pay attention to good hygiene when feeding birds in the garden, regularly clean the outside of the feeder with a mild disinfectant, remove old bird food, leave it as empty as possible and wash it. hand.” Bird flu warning at ‘extraordinary’ level in UK


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