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Date posted: 21 October 2022

Avian Influenza (bird flu)

Following an increase in the number of detections of Avian Influenza (AI) in wild birds and on commercial premises, the Chief Veterinary Officers from England, Scotland and Wales have declared an Avian Influenza Prevention Zone (AIPZ) across Great Britain to mitigate the risk of the disease spreading amongst poultry and captive birds.

This means that from 12 noon on Monday 17 October, it will be a legal requirement for all bird keepers in Great Britain,  whether birds are kept commercially or as pets, to follow strict biosecurity measures to help protect their flocks from the threat of avian flu. 

Keepers with more than 500 birds will need to restrict access for non-essential people on their sites, workers will need to change clothing and footwear before entering bird enclosures and site vehicles will need to be cleaned and disinfected regularly to limit the risk of the disease spreading.

Backyard owners with smaller numbers of poultry including chickens, ducks and geese must also take steps to limit the risk of the disease spreading to their animals.

If you spot dead wild waterfowl (swans, geese or ducks) or other dead wild birds, such as gulls or birds of prey, please report to Defra’s GB helpline: 03459 335577.

The AIPZ, now in force across Great Britain, does not include a nationwide requirement to house birds. However, this is being kept under constant review.  It will be in place until further notice and will be kept under regular review as part of the government’s work to monitor and manage the risks of bird flu.

You can find further information on Avian influenza (bird flu) - GOV.UK (


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