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Bird flu confirmed in wild birds in UK for first time this winter

Staff Writer |
Bird flu has been detected in 17 wild birds in Dorset, the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has confirmed today, with more expected over the coming days.

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This is the first confirmed finding of the virus in the UK this winter and tests have shown it is closely related to the H5N6 strain that has been circulating in wild birds across Europe in recent months.

This is different to the strains which affected people in China last year and Public Health England have advised the risk to public health is very low. The Food Standards Agency have said that bird flu does not pose a food safety risk for UK consumers.

While there is no legislative requirement to put restrictions in place when this strain of virus is found in wild birds, the Chief Veterinary Officer Nigel Gibbens has confirmed local measures will be introduced to help manage the potential threat.

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