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Agriculture

Avian influenza (bird flu)


Avian Influenza Prevention Zone

The UK Chief Veterinary Officers have announced that the mandatory housing measures for poultry and captive birds will be lifted across the UK from 00:01 on Monday 2 May 2022. The Avian Influenza Prevention Zone (AIPZ) will remain in force across the UK until further notice, with only the housing measures component being lifted from 00:01 on the 2 May 2022. This means all bird keepers (whether they have pet birds, a commercial or a backyard flock) must continue to take effective and precautionary biosecurity measures until further notice.

This means all bird keepers (whether they have pet birds, a commercial sized or a backyard flock) must be diligent in continuing to take effective and precautionary biosecurity measures including cleansing and disinfecting equipment, clothing and vehicles, limiting access to non-essential people on their sites, and workers changing clothing and footwear before entering and when leaving bird enclosures.

Poultry and captive bird keepers must be vigilant for any signs of disease in their birds and any wild birds, and seek prompt advice from their vet if they have any concerns.

All bird keepers must:

  • cleanse and disinfect clothing, footwear, equipment and vehicles before and after contact with poultry and captive birds – if practical, use disposable protective clothing
  • reduce the movement of people, vehicles or equipment to and from areas where poultry and captive birds are kept, to minimise contamination from manure, slurry and other products, and use effective vermin control
  • thoroughly cleanse and disinfect housing on a continuous basis
  • keep fresh disinfectant at the right concentration at all farm and poultry housing entry and exit points
  • minimise direct and indirect contact between poultry and captive birds and wild birds, including making sure all feed and water is not accessible to wild birds.

We would encourage all keepers to register their flocks with the Animal and Plant Health Agency. For poultry this is a legal requirement if you have 50 birds or more (poultry includes chickens, ducks, turkeys, geese, pigeon (bred for meat), partridge, quail, guinea fowl and pheasants).

Poultry keepers and members of the public should report dead wild birds to Defra’s national dead wild bird helpline on 03459 33 55 77 (please select option 7) and keepers should report suspicion of disease to APHA on 03000 200 301. Keepers should familiarise themselves with their avian flu advice.

For further information see GOV.UK – Bird flu – Latest situation: Chief Vet urges bird keepers to maintain scrupulous biosecurity standards as housing measures set to be lifted.



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