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Vets urge action to reduce avian flu risk
As winter approaches, the risk of migratory wild birds infecting domestic poultry increases.

“We encourage keepers across the UK to implement strong biosecurity practices now" - UK's CVOs. 

The UK’s four chief veterinary officers have released a joint statement calling on poultry keepers to act now to reduce the risk of avian influenza this winter.

While the UK was recently declared free from avian flu, there have been 26 outbreaks in poultry and captive birds in the last year, and more than 300 outbreaks in wild birds. 

The joint statement reads: “Avian flu is a continued threat to all poultry keepers, and as winter approaches we need to be ready for the increased risk of disease that migrating birds pose to our flocks.

“We encourage keepers across the UK to implement strong biosecurity practices now, including regular shed maintenance checks, cleaning and disinfecting footwear and signing up for our email and text alerts. Making these tasks a regular fixture of your disease control plans now will make a significant difference in the fight against avian flu this winter and for years to come.”

With winter approaching, the risk of migratory wild birds infecting domestic poultry increases, making it critical for poultry farmers and bird keepers to improve biosecurity standards. 

To mitigate the impact of avian flu in the UK, vets are urging poultry keepers to regularly clean and disinfect any hard surfaces, keep chickens and turkey separate from ducks and geese, and contact regular maintenance checks on their sheds.
Other measures include drawing up contingency plans for storing bedding and dealing with pests and putting fencing around outdoor areas where birds are allowed.

British Hen Welfare Trust founder Jane Howorth also called on those that keep hens as pets to prepare for the winter months:

“For those of us that enjoy keeping a few pet hens in our gardens, now is the time to start gearing up to protect them during the migration season when avian flu becomes more of a threat,” she said.
“It’s no more taxing than having to book any other family pet in for an annual health check, but is so important both for the safety of your own birds as well as that of the national commercial flock.”

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VET Festival returns for 2022

News Story 1
 VET Festival, the unique CPD opportunity, is returning for 2022, running from 20 to 21 May.

The outdoor event, held at Loseley Park in Guildford, will feature 17 education streams, with a dedicated stream covering veterinary wellness, leadership and management topics. The festival will feature veterinary speakers from around the world, with the opportunity to collect 14 hours of CPD across the two-day event.

Alongside veterinary education, VET Festival will also offer wellbeing activities such as yoga and mindfulness activities, with the popular VETFest Live Party Night making a return for 2022.

Tickets available here.  

Click here for more...
News Shorts
Avian influenza housing order declared in Yorkshire

A new avian influenza prevention zone has been declared in North Yorkshire following the identification of H5N1 avian influenza at a number of premises.

The requirement means all bird keepers in Harrogate, Hambleton and Richmondshire are now legally required to keep their birds indoors and follow strict biosecurity measures.

Several other cases of H5N1 avian influenza have also been confirmed in recent days at sites in Essex, Cheshire and Cumbria. On Monday (22 November), the disease was identified near Wells-next-the-Sea, North Norfolk.