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Chicken owners urged to continue keeping them indoors

Published Monday 9 January 2017 at 9:40

Residents who keep chickens or ducks are urged to continue to keep them inside after a case of avian flu was confirmed in Yorkshire.

The Government had declared a Prevention Zone in December last year to help protect poultry and captive birds from a strain of avian flu that was detected in mainland Europe.

The zone covers England and was to remain in place for 30 days however, it has now been extended to February 28.

It follows the confirmation of several cases of Avian flu with the most recent discovered in a small backyard flock near Settle in North Yorkshire.

Other cases of Avian Flu have been discovered in a backyard flock in Carmarthenshire, Wales, at a turkey farm in Lincolnshire last month and in a number of wild birds in England, Wales and Scotland.

Keepers of poultry and other captive birds are required to keep their birds indoors, or take appropriate steps to keep them separate from wild birds.

Public Health England (PHE) advises that the threat to human health remains very low.

Poultry keepers are advised to be vigilant for any signs of disease in their birds and any wild birds, and seek prompt advice from their vet if they have any concerns. They should also take a number of precautions including:

  • cleaning and disinfecting clothing, footwear, equipment and vehicles before and after contact with poultry – if practical, use disposable protective clothing;
  • reduce the movement of people, vehicles or equipment to and from areas where poultry are kept
  • thoroughly clean and disinfect housing
  • minimising direct and indirect contact between poultry and wild birds, including making sure all feed and water is not accessible to wild birds

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