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Alert as avian flu outbreak is confirmed in Derbyshire

Published: 10 November 2022

An outbreak of avian flu has been confirmed at premises near Hatton in South Derbyshire.

The case of H5N1 avian influenza, also known as bird flu, was confirmed in commercial poultry after a visit to the premises by the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA), and a 3km protection zone and 10 kilometre surveillance zone have been put in place around the infected premises to limit the risk of the disease spreading.

Our trading standards officers are working closely with emergency planning and highways colleagues, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and APHA to control the outbreak.

Our highways officers will be putting road signs in place to warn people when they are entering the 10 kilometre surveillance zone.

Strict measures are now in force to limit the risk of the disease spreading, including restrictions on the movement of poultry and other captive birds, carcasses, eggs, used poultry litter and manure. All keepers of birds in the disease control zones must follow the increased measures while the restrictions are in place as a legal requirement.

Check the latest situation and see if you are in the disease control zones.

Trading standards officers, along with partner agencies, will be out in the area over the next few days knocking on doors in the 3km protection zone to identify any households keeping any type of bird to warn them of new restrictions and help to stop the spread of the disease. They will also identify unregistered birds / flocks and report them back to Defra through APHA. All agencies involved are encouraging all keepers to register their poultry, even if only kept as pets, so that APHA can contact them during an outbreak. This is a legal requirement for people who have 50 or more birds. Find out how to register your birds, how to prevent bird flu and stop it spreading.

The Derbyshire outbreak follows the introduction of national measures to prevent bird flu cases which were introduced on Monday (7 November 2022), which made it mandatory for all bird keepers to house their flocks, whether backyard or commercial flocks.

UK Health Security Agency has confirmed that the risk of bird flu 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. Properly cooked eggs and poultry are safe to eat.

Cabinet Member for Health and Communities Councillor Carol Hart said:

“Unfortunately we have had a confirmed case of avian flu in Derbyshire and our trading standards officers, along with partner agencies, are working closely with Defra to help reduce the spread of the disease.

“It’s really important that they identify anyone who has birds and ensure they know about the restrictions and follow the rules.

“The risk to public health is low and there will be road signs up in the area telling people when they are entering the surveillance zone.”

Avian influenza (bird flu) is a notifiable animal disease. Anyone suspecting any type of avian influenza in poultry or captive birds must report it immediately by calling the Defra Rural Services Helpline on tel: 03000 200301. Failure to do so is an offence.

If anyone finds dead wild waterfowl (swans, geese or ducks) or other dead wild birds, such as gulls or birds of prey, they should report them to the Defra helpline, tel: 03459 335577 - please select option 7.