Avian influenza identified in Staffordshire
A case of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) H5N8 has been confirmed in broiler chickens at a commercial premises in East Staffordshire.
A 3km Protection and 10km Surveillance Zone has been placed around the infected premises near Uttoxeter, replacing the Temporary Control Zones introduced on 27 March 2021.
This is the fourteenth case of (HPAI) H5N8 in poultry in England and comes ahead of the lifting of compulsory housing measures for poultry and captive birds (31 March). The APHA has stated that it is currently reviewing this situation and will provide clarification 'very soon'.
Earlier this month, the APHA reduced the risk level of avian influenza in the UK from ‘high’ to ‘medium’. While the compulsory housing restrictions are set to end, the avian influenza prevention zone requiring enhanced biosecurity will remain in place.
Under the AIPZ, bird gatherings are still prohibited and high standards of biosecurity remain essential. In a joint statement Great Britain’s three Chief Veterinary Officers said:
“We have taken swift action to contain and eliminate this disease and all bird keepers - whether they have just a few birds or thousands - must continue to do their bit to maintain strict biosecurity measures on their premises so that we do not lose the progress that we have made over the past few months as Low risk does not mean No Risk.”