UK: Defra offers biosecurity advice following AI case
Wild birds are one possible source of the H5N8 avian flu outbreak in East Yorkshire. That is why Defra is now advising poultry keepers to follow good practice to minimise contact with wild birds while the origin of the infection is being investigated.
The organisation has published a list of good practice including:
- Isolating new birds before they are placed with existing farm birds, to prevent possible disease spread.
- Reducing the likelihood of contact with wild birds by making sure housing is bird proof; minimising contamination by wild birds of feed and water supplies and avoiding siting of housing near water.
- Thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting housing at the end of a cycle.
- Minimising potential contamination from manure, slurry and other products that could carry disease, by reducing movements of people, vehicles or equipment into and from areas where poultry are kept.
- Cleansing and disinfecting protective clothing, footwear, equipment and vehicles before and after contact with poultry. If practicable use disposable protective clothing.
Defra is also reminding poultry keepers to be extra vigilant in providing clean drinking water and food, preferably indoors, to prevent possible contamination.
It is essential that anyone keeping poultry is vigilant for any signs of disease and seeks prompt advice from their vet if they have any concerns. Premises within the Protection and Surveillance zones are subject to specific requirements in relation to biosecurity, the organization said in a statement.
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