Poultry gatherings suspended following avian flu case – Press releases – GOV.UK

Further measures announced to reduce the risk of avian flu spreading

Source: Poultry gatherings suspended following avian flu case – Press releases – GOV.UK

It is a huge shame that in precisely two weeks we have gone from preventative measures taken as a precaution, to an outbreak of AI, albeit localised, and then to the inevitable ban on poultry gatherings such as auctions, fairs and exhibitions.dsc_2618

It comes as no surprise, and whilst it is not something I would have wanted to predict at this time of year when we are only part way through the winter show schedule, there was always an air of closing the door after the horse has bolted, given the announcement a fortnight back.

That isn’t a reflection on the authorities, or those who have worked hard to come up with the most viable approach to the problem being witnessed on the continent. It is instead a sad a reflection of the knife edge on which we perch when it comes to disease pervasiveness and industrial scale global food production.

A ban on poultry shows is minor collateral damage from which the hobby will recover, however I suspect the same cannot be said of those producers whose livelihoods depend upon the livestock they grow for the food chain. The truth is, the more uniform and clinical something becomes the higher the risk that transmission will result in a total wipe out. If this were not the case then there would be many more dead wild birds being found with AI across our countryside.

3 Replies to “Poultry gatherings suspended following avian flu case – Press releases – GOV.UK”

  1. Hi Andy,

    I completely agree with your comments on this post, have you seen accounts of wild birds being found dead with AI? I haven’t and just wondered whether I’d missed them…

    If locking up our birds is keeping them safe, when do you think they will be allowed to free range again?


    1. Hi Sara – I remember last time there was an outbreak and the same situation arose. The infection hit a commercial unit and swept through it like wild fire just in the way in appears to have happen in the farm last week. That level of virulence could only be down to the persistently high stock density and the genetic similarity of the stock otherwise we would see significantly more instances of mass wild bird death.

      With regard to when they will be allowed to range again, I suspect this will depend upon whether we have any more occurrences.

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