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Strict measures in place as bird flu confirmed near Ilkeston

Published: 26 April 2022

An outbreak of avian influenza has been confirmed in a backyard flock at a premises in Derbyshire.

The case of H5N1 avian influenza, also known as bird flu, was confirmed by the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) after a visit to the premises near Ilkeston and has affected a number of chickens, geese and ducks.

A 3km protection zone and 10km surveillance zone have been put in place around the infected premises and strict measures are now in force to limit the risk of the disease spreading.

It comes just one month after an outbreak was confirmed at Straw’s Bridge nature reserve, known locally as Swan Lake, in West Hallam.

While national Government guidelines in place to protect poultry and captive birds are set to be relaxed on Monday 2 May, our trading standards officers are reminding all bird keepers affected by the Ilkeston area outbreak in the 3km and 10km zones that it is a legal requirement to follow the strict guidelines in place in those areas until further notice.

Residents can check the latest situation and if you are in the disease control zone.

Derbyshire’s trading standards officers are working with colleagues at Nottinghamshire County Council, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and APHA to control the latest outbreak, and road signs are being put in place to warn people when they are entering the protection zone.

Trading standards officers will be out in the area over the next week knocking on doors in the 3km protection zone to identify any households keeping any type of bird to warn them of the new restrictions. 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 and can be done by contacting APHA Poultry Register on tel: 0800 634 1112 or completing the poultry (including game birds): registration form

They can also contact the main APHA helpline on tel: 0300 0200301 for help and advice.

Our Cabinet Member for Health and Communities Councillor Carol Hart said:

“Unfortunately we have had another confirmed case of avian flu in Derbyshire and our trading standards officers, along with colleagues at Nottinghamshire are working closely with the relevant Government agencies 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 to the letter.

“The risk to public health is low but people travelling into the 10km zone need to be aware of the outbreak. There will be roadside signs up in the area telling people when they are entering the zone.”

UK Health Security Agency 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. Properly cooked eggs and poultry are safe to eat.

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 200 301. Failure to do so is an offence. People can find out more about how to spot bird flu.

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 33 55 77 - select option 7.