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H5N8 Avian Influenza update - 12th April 17

All poultry restrictions will be lifted from Thursday 13th April. 

  • The UK has lifted all restriction zones; nevertheless, outbreaks and wild bird cases continue to be reported in Europe.
  • Expert opinion has confirmed that around two thirds of wild migratory waterfowl have now left the UK for breeding grounds and resident wild waterfowl will now be entering the breeding season with associated behavioural changes.
  • The risk of new incursions of H5N8 HPAI through the movement of wild water fowl to the UK has decreased from High to Medium.
  • The risk from resident wild waterfowl and environmental contamination remains High, with high uncertainty.
  • The overall risk to domestic poultry remains at Low to Medium and depends on the level of biosecurity on farm.  This risk is however, less related to large aggregations of wild migratory waterfowl.
  • Defra’s wild bird surveillance will be increased, to include our resident wild waterfowl, to address the uncertainty around the continual circulation of H5N8 HPAI.

EU – number of H5N8 findings since November 2016:


Defra’s latest outbreak assessment can be found here. 

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