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Fifth UK case of avian influenza confirmed
The APHA has updated its biosecurity guidance and published a new self-assessment biosecurity checklist.

Temporary control zones have been placed around the premises.

A fifth case of avian influenza has been confirmed in poultry and captive wild birds at a premises in Leicestershire.

This latest case in captive and wild birds follows the discovery of H5N8 avian influenza in Gloucestershire, Cheshire, Herefordshire and Kent.
A small number of wild birds in Gloucestershire, Devon and Dorset have also tested positive for the disease.

Temporary control zones of 3km and 10km have been placed around the premises located near Melton Mowbray. However, the pathogenicity has yet to be determined. 

Earlier this month, an Avian Influenza Prevention Zone (AIPZ) was declared across the UK, meaning the bird keepers across England, Scotland and Wales now legally obliged to follow strict biosecurity measures. 

On Friday (20 November), the APHA updated its biosecurity guidance and published a new self-assessment biosecurity checklist for all bird keepers.

Chief veterinary officer for the UK, 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.”

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Born Free video highlights how humans are to blame for COVID-19

News Story 1
 Wildlife charity Born Free has released a video emphasising the importance of changing the ways in which humans treat wildlife in order to prevent pandemics from occurring in the future.

The video, narrated by founder patron Joanna Lumley OBE, says: "To deal with the very immediate threat of another global catastrophe, we have to focus on ending the destruction and conversion of natural habitats and the devastating impact of the wildlife trade.

"The vast majority of these viruses originated in wild animals before infecting us. Destroying and exploiting nature puts us in closer contact with wildlife than ever before."

Born Free has compiled an online resource with information on how to take action and improve protections for wildlife here.

To view the video, please click here.

Images (c) Jan Schmidt-Burbach. 

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RVC opens 2021 Summer Schools applications

The Royal Veterinary College (RVC) has opened applications for its 2021 Summer Schools, with students in Years 10, 11 and 12 invited to apply.

Taking place between July and August 2021, the event gives budding vets from all backgrounds first-hand insight into what it's like to study at the Campus.

Much of this year's content is likely to be delivered virtually, including online lectures and practical demonstrations, but the RVC hopes to welcome each of the participants to campus for at least one day to gain some hands-on experience.

For more information about the Schools and to apply, visit: Applications close on the 2 March 2021.