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Bird flu Prevention Zone in Scotland to be extended until May

Staff Writer |
An Avian Influenza Prevention Zone for all poultry and captive birds will remain in force until the end of April, Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing has confirmed.

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While the current Prevention Zone remains in place until 28 February, the requirements of the zone will be amended after that point, meaning that keepers will have the option of letting their birds outside, provided that they put in place enhanced biosecurity to minimise the risk of infection from wild birds.

Measures in the renewed zone will continue to apply across all of Scotland, with no targeting of specific areas.

Until 28 February all poultry and captive bird keepers in Scotland must continue to keep their birds indoors, or take appropriate practical steps to keep them separate from wild birds.

A GB-wide ban on poultry shows and gatherings also remains in force. While there have been no cases confirmed in domestic poultry or captive birds in Scotland, there have been several cases in England and Wales.

Scotland’s Chief Veterinary Officer Sheila Voas said: "The risk level from Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza remains at ‘high’ for wild birds, and ‘low to medium’ for domestic birds.

"It is essential that keepers continue to ensure that their birds are protected from infection by practicing the highest levels of biosecurity."

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