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Detector dogs in Scotland to help prevent spread of exotic animal diseases
The dogs will help to stop the introduction of exotic animal diseases in Scotland, such as African swine fever and foot and mouth disease.

The 'dog squad' will sniff out products of animal origin. 

A new 'dog squad' of detector dogs has been formed in Scotland to sniff out products of animal origin (PoAO) and stop the importation of exotic animal diseases.

The dogs will be based full time at airports, ports and parcel hubs across Scotland, and have been funded by the Scottish government. 

Mairi Gougeon, rural affairs secretary for Scotland, said: “The Scottish Government and Border Force have worked closely to get the dogs operational in Scotland. 

“Alongside their handlers, they have taken part in a robust training regime and now that they have passed their assessments they can get to work and help us detect PoAO entering Scotland illegally.

“The Scottish Government investment in our new detector dog service will enhance the detection of illegal products of animal origin and reduce the risk of exotic diseases entering Scotland, thus helping to keep our rural economy safe.

“Monthly seizure data provided by Border Force North helps us ascertain where PoAO originate from and helps us identify periods where seizures are above average.” 

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World Bee Day celebrations begin

News Story 1
 Today (20 May) marks the fifth annual World Bee Day, which raises awareness of the importance of bees and pollinators to people and the planet. Observed on the anniversary of pioneering Slovenian beekeeper Anton Jana's birthday, this year's celebration is themed: 'Bee Engaged: Celebrating the diversity of bees and beekeeping systems'.

Organisations and people celebrating the day will raise awareness of the accelerated decline in pollinator diversity, and highlight the importance of sustainable beekeeping systems and a wide variety of bees. Slovenia, the initiator of World Bee Day, will be focusing on teaching young people about the significance of pollinators. 

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News Shorts
Further avian flu cases confirmed

Three cases of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) H5N1 have been confirmed in recent days, bringing the total number of cases in England to 98.

On Thursday, the APHA confirmed two cases of HPAI H5N1 near Redgrave, Mid Suffolk and Market Weston, West Suffolk. A case H5N1 was also confirmed in poultry at a premises near Southwell, Newark and Sherwood, Nottinghamshire.

Protection and surveillance zones are in place around the affected premises. Further details are available at gov.uk