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Avian influenza identified in Gloucestershire
The discovery comes after the introduction of an Avian Influenza Prevention Zone across Britain.

Temporary control zones have been placed around the infected premises. 

The Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) has confirmed a case of avian influenza in captive birds at a non-poultry premises in Gloucestershire.

In its latest update, Defra reports that a strain of highly pathogenic H5N8 avian influenza has been found at the premises near Stroud.

It reports that 3km and 10km temporary control zones have placed around the infected premises.  However, the pathogenicity of the outbreak is yet to be confirmed.

The discovery comes after the introduction of an Avian Influenza Prevention Zone (AIPZ) across Britain following several confirmed cases in captive and wild birds. 

The restrictions mean that keepers with 500 birds or more must restrict access to non-essential people on their sites. Workers are also required to change their clothing and footwear before entering bird enclosures, and site vehicles must be cleaned and disinfected daily.

On announcing the measure, the UK's chief veterinary officer, Christine Middlemiss, said: "Public Health England has confirmed that the risk to public health is very low and the Food Standards Agency advises that bird flu poses a very low food safety risk for UK consumers.

“Whether you keep just a few birds or thousands, you are now legally required to meet enhanced biosecurity requirements and this is in your interests to do, to protect your birds from this highly infectious disease.”

The AIPZ was introduced after a decision to raise the risk level for avian influenza incursion in wild birds in Great Britain from ‘medium’ to ‘high’. Earlier this month, two separate, unrelated cases of avian influenza were confirmed in Cheshire and Kent. 

H5N8 avian flu was also confirmed at a broiler breeder farm in Herefordshire. A small number of wild birds in Gloucestershire, Devon and Dorset have also tested positive for the disease. 

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Boehringer Ingelheim to host online Christmas comedy special

News Story 1
 Boehringer Ingelheim (BI) Animal Health is set to host a live Christmas comedy event to provide entertainment and festive fun for veterinary professionals.

BI Animal Health's Christmas Comedy Cracker is a free online event, designed to help veterinary professionals sit back and relax at the end of what has been a difficult year for the whole profession.

The event will take place online at 8pm on Thursday 17 December. Comedian Rhys James will host and the line-up also includes ventriloquist Nina Conti, comedian Zoe Lyons and musical comedy troupe The Noise Next Door.

To register your place for free please visit www.christmascomedycracker.co.uk 

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News Shorts
VMD and VPS announce joint open information day

The Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) and the Veterinary Products Committee (VPC) have announced a joint open information day covering topics such as veterinary medicines regulations, antimicrobial resistance, scientific advice and novel therapies.

Taking place on Wednesday 18 November, the virtual event will take the form of a series of pre-recorded webinars and a 'Slido' Q&A session. Links to the webinars and full instructions on how to use Slido will be available on gov.uk on 18 November. To join the mailing list for the event, email director.support@vmd.gov.uk