UPDATE (1 SEPTEMBER 2022): Further to yesterday's announcement (below) of the Avian Influenza Prevention Zone, we have today received confirmation from the Animal Plant Health Agency that the wild bird samples taken from the Isles of Scilly have tested positive for Avian Influenza H5N1.
Following a number of detections of avian influenza in poultry and wild and captive birds across Devon, Cornwall and parts of Somerset, the UK’s Deputy Chief Veterinary Officer has declared an Avian Influenza Prevention Zone (AIPZ) across the region (including the Isles of Scilly) to mitigate the risk of further outbreaks of disease occurring. The AIPZ is effective from 12pm today (31 August 2022) and will remain in place until further notice. A map of the Avian Influenza Prevention Zone is available on gov.uk.
This means that, as of 12 noon today, it is a legal requirement for all bird keepers in Devon, Cornwall (including the Isles of Scilly) and parts of Somerset to follow strict biosecurity measures to help protect their flocks, of whatever type or size.
What does this mean on Scilly?
- Bird keepers must familiarise themselves with the government's avian flu advice and report suspicion of disease in their birds to the Animal and Plant Health Agency on 03000 200 301.
- Anyone on the islands can report dead wild birds to Defra’s national dead wild bird helpline on 03459 33 55 77 (option 7). However, if you report them to the Council of the Isles of Scilly on 0300 1234 105 (option 5) or the Isles of Scilly Wildlife Trust on 01720 422 153, we can report it to Defra for you, as well as keep a local record and arrange for collection where possible.
The UK Health Security Agency continue to advise that the risk to public health from the virus is very low. However, 15 wild bird carcasses have been sent to the mainland for testing following an unexpectedly high number of reports of dead seabirds last week. We will update you as soon as we receive the results of these tests.