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Disease Update 2: 13.01.16 Avian Influenza near Dunfermline

  1. The case has now been confirmed as Low Pathogenic H5N1 – described by the Scottish Government as a ‘very mild strain’;
  2. Given that AI has been confirmed (previously it was suspected) the 1km Temporary Control Zone (TCZ) imposed on 10 January was replaced with a 1km Restricted Zone (RZ) centred on the IP;
  3. There are no changes to the zone size or restrictions that apply so today’s formal confirmation is something of a technicality;
  4. The one kilometre restrictions around the premises will remain in force for 21 days after preliminary cleansing and disinfection;
  5. There are no other poultry premises within the 1km RZ;
  6. Detection of the presence of the virus was via the APHA’s ‘Test for Exclusion’ pilot;
  7. Culling on site started today. So far 3 of the 10 sheds have been cleared. Currently 5 catchers are on site but this is increasing to 12 tomorrow (Thursday);
  8. It is expected that the cull will be completed Friday morning;
  9. The birds are being valued as the cull continues;
  10. The birds are being transported to Pointons in Staffordshire;
  11. Nearly 100 (Full Time Equivalent) APHA staff have been deployed on the outbreak;  
  12. Movement licences are being issued;
  13. Defra are very complimentary of the farm’s records and the associated hatchery.  That has helped speed up the whole process and give them confidence of when the disease was first incurred.  This has meant they have licensed the movement of day old chicks;
  14. APHA are now carrying out an epidemiological investigation to identify the likely source of the infection;
  15. The Scottish Government have just signed off the report to go to OIE.  They are stressing region as “Dunfermline parish” to lessen impacts on trade;
  16. The Scottish Government have produced a biosecurity information leaflet – please see attached;
  17. The Scottish Government today issued a further press release which can be read here:
  18. Key messages:

It is important to stress that this strain is quite distinct from the highly pathogenic form of H5N1 that has caused significant problems over the past decade or so around the world. On the basis of current scientific evidence, the Food Standard Scotland advice is that bird flu does not pose a food safety risk for UK consumers.The risk of getting bird flu through the food chain is very low. Properly cooked poultry and poultry products, including eggs, are safe to eat. Poultry producers should continue to remain vigilant and seek immediate veterinary advice if they have any concerns.

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