Bird keepers in Scotland are reminded to maximise biosecurity and keep their flocks housed after avian influenza (H5N1) was confirmed in a flock of approximately 14,000 mixed gamebirds on a gamebird rearing premises in Leven, Glenrothes.
Laboratory results of samples taken from the flock have identified the strain as highly pathogenic in poultry. In order to limit the further spread of disease, appropriate restrictions have been imposed on the premises.
A Protection Zone (PZ) of 3 km and a Surveillance Zone (SZ) of 10 km have now been put in place around the infected premises to limit the risk of spread of the disease. Within these zones a range of controls are in place, including restrictions on the movement of poultry, carcasses, eggs, used poultry litter and manure. Legislation for the H5N1 strain require a Restricted Zone (RZ) to also be declared. However, this RZ will also be 10 km and will have the same extent as the PZ and SZ, with no additional measures.
Public health advice is that the risk to human health from the virus is very low and food standards bodies advise that avian influenzas pose a very low food safety risk for UK consumers, and it does not affect the consumption of poultry products including eggs.
Producers and bird keepers are reminded to comply with the order to house birds that came in to effect on the 14 December 2020, or ensure they are kept separate from wild birds and follow biosecurity procedures.