Birds culled as high-path bird flu confirmed in Yorkshire

Government vets have confirmed a new outbreak of highly-pathogenic avian influenza
Government vets have confirmed a new outbreak of highly-pathogenic avian influenza

The government has ordered a protection zone to be put around a farm in North Yorkshire after birds were confirmed as having highly-pathogenic bird flu.

A new outbreak of avian influenza H5N1 was recorded in birds at a premises in Leeming Bar, Hambleton, Defra said on Saturday (13 November).

Further testing of the outbreak has confirmed it to be highly-pathogenic, the department said, and all birds will be humanely culled.

The H5N1 subtype of the disease is highly contagious and can decimate poultry flocks.

A 3km and 10km Temporary Control Zones have been put in place surrounding the premises in Leeming Bar.

It follows numerous outbreaks of highly-pathogenic bird flu, including in Lancashire, Essex and Warwickshire just this week alone.

Because of the frequency of outbreaks, an Avian Influenza Prevention Zone (AIPZ) was declared across the whole of Britain last week.

The AIPZ means that it is now a legal requirement for all bird keepers to follow strict biosecurity measures as a way to mitigate the risk of the disease spreading.

In a joint statement the Chief Veterinary Officers for Wales, England and Scotland said: "All bird keepers must take action now to prevent the disease spreading to poultry and other domestic birds.

“Whether you keep just a few birds or thousands, you are now legally required to introduce higher biosecurity standards on your farm or small holding.

"It is in your interests to do so in order to protect your birds from this highly infectious disease," the CVOs explained.

“The UK health agencies have confirmed that the risk to public health is very low and UK food standards agencies advise that bird flu poses a very low food safety risk for UK consumers.”