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Hebrides News


A ban stopping all poultry and captive birds roaming outdoors has been extended until the end of February.

An outbreak of avian flu has appeared in Wales.

The legal measures aims to keep chickens away from wild birds to reduce their risk of being infected with the “highly pathogenic” H5N8 strain by migratory wildfowl and gulls.

Waves of the virus been found in birds across Europe, Africa and Asia.

Prevention measures introduced on 6 December will now continue until 28 February at least, the Scottish Government announced.

Keepers are legally required to ensure all poultry and captive birds are secured indoors, or take appropriate practical steps to keep them separate from wild birds.

They must also take extra steps to ensure good biosecurity on their premises and minimise the risk of infection and further spread of the disease.

Cabinet Secretary for Rural Economy, Fergus Ewing, said: “We have decided to extend the original prevention zone to 28 February as a precautionary measure to protect Scotland’s valuable poultry industry.

“Confirmation of the arrival of the virus throughout the UK, highlights how essential it is that bird keepers comply with the Avian Influenza Prevention Zone, as well as continuing to practice and improve, where possible, their biosecurity measures.

“We and our partners continue to monitor the situation closely and stand ready to respond to any suspicion of disease in Scotland.

Scotland’s chief veterinary officer, Sheila Voas, said: ““Expert advice remains that consumers should not be concerned about eating eggs or poultry and the threat to public health from the virus is very low.”

Bird keepers are urged to be vigilant and




Bird flu ban extended after outbreak found in Wales

4 January 2017