Poultry keepers urged to be vigilant after avian influenza case found in Staffordshire

Sunday, 28th March 2021

POULTRY and bird keepers are being advises to keep their animals housed after a case of avian influenza was discovered on a Staffordshire farm.

Staffordshire County Council’s trading standards team is working with the Animal and Plant Health Agency and the Staffordshire Civil Contingencies Unit to respond to the incident in the Staffordshire Moorlands.

A protection and surveillance zone have been set up around the premises.

People can contact the trading standards team on 01785 277875 or email animal.health@staffordshire.gov.uk

Staffordshire County Council’s trading standards manager Stephanie Young said:

“Anyone with poultry in Staffordshire should be vigilant and look out for signs of avian influenza and maintain biosecurity measures.

“If anyone has any concerns or needs further information, they should contact us straight away.”

Avian influenza (bird flu)

Avian influenza (bird flu) is a notifiable animal disease. If you suspect any type of avian influenza in poultry or captive birds you must report it immediately by calling the Defra Rural Services Helpline on 03000 200 301. Failure to do so is an offence.

An Avian Influenza Prevention Zone (AIPZ) including housing measures is in force across the whole of England. For further details of the measures that apply, see the AIPZ section.

If you find dead wild waterfowl (swans, geese or ducks) or other dead wild birds, such as gulls or birds of prey, you should report them to the Defra helpline (03459 33 55 77 – please select option 7).

All bird keepers (whether you have pet birds, commercial flocks or just a few birds in a backyard flock) must keep a close watch on them for signs of disease and maintain good biosecurity at all times. If you have any concerns about the health of your birds, seek prompt advice from your vet.

You should register your poultry, even if only kept as pets, so that DEFRA can contact you during an outbreak. This is a legal requirement if you have 50 or more birds. Poultry includes chickens, ducks, turkeys, geese, pigeon (bred for meat), partridge, quail, guinea fowl and pheasants.