Mandatory housing measures for all poultry and captive birds are to be introduced to all areas of England from 00:01 on Monday 7 November 2022, following a decision by the United Kingdom’s Chief Veterinary Officer.
The housing measures legally require all bird keepers to keep their birds indoors and to follow stringent biosecurity measures to help protect their flocks from the disease, regardless of type or size.
Over the last year, the United Kingdom has faced its largest ever outbreak of avian influenza with over 200 cases confirmed since late October 2021. The introduction of the housing measures comes after the disease was detected at over 70 premises since the beginning of October, as well as multiple reports in wild birds.
Biosecurity guidance and a biosecurity self-assessment checklist have been published by Defra to assist all bird keepers in instigating and maintaining good biosecurity, which together with further updates on the latest avian influenza situation, can be found at GOV.UK/bird-flu.
The addition of housing measures to the Avian Influenza Prevention Zone already in force across England means all bird keepers across England must:
- House or net all poultry and captive birds
- Cleanse and disinfect clothing, footwear, equipment and vehicles before and after contact with poultry and captive birds – if practical, use disposable protective clothing
- Reduce the movement of people, vehicles or equipment to and from areas where poultry and captive birds are kept, to minimise contamination from manure, slurry and other products, and use effective vermin control
- Keep records of mortality, movement of poultry and poultry products and any changes in production
- Thoroughly cleanse and disinfect housing on a continuous basis
- Keep fresh disinfectant at the right concentration at all farm and poultry housing entry and exit points
- Minimise direct and indirect contact between poultry and captive birds and wild birds, including making sure all feed and water is not accessible to wild birds
- Prevent access by poultry to ponds and watercourses and ensure that birds are kept in fenced or enclosed areas
For more information please see: Avian influenza: Housing order to be introduced across England - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
If you have any questions, please contact Environmental Health at firstname.lastname@example.org.