The NGO has learned that the Netherlands has reported 2 cases of highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N8 in wild waterfowl (mute swans).
As this is the start of the migration season in NW Europe, and the level of wild waterfowl population is due to increase over the coming months, Defra has raised the risk level for incursion of avian influenza through the movements of wild birds to “MEDIUM”. The risk for an introduction into poultry is LOW, provided strong biosecurity is in place.
Liam Bell, chairman of the National Gamekeepers’ Organisation, said:
“We are reminding all game bird keepers to increase their levels of awareness over the coming months and to ensure that the appropriate levels of biosecurity are in place.”
Standing advice for keepers of game birds to help prevent Bird Flu can be found here: https://www.nationalgamekeepers.org.uk/articles/bird-flu-and-gamebirds-revised-guidance-issued