Scotland

Farmers placed on alert after bird flu case in Scotland

Chickens Image copyright Thinkstock
Image caption The NFU Scotland was made aware of the case last week

Poultry farmers in Scotland have been urged to boost security after a case of bird flu was confirmed.

The National Farmers Union Scotland said the virus, thought to have been contracted from wild birds, was found at an undisclosed location last week.

The union later confirmed the case, in free range laying flock, had been dealt with and the restrictions on the farm have been lifted.

But it reminded members to adhere to strict biosecurity requirements.

This includes cleaning and disinfecting vehicles and equipment that have come into contact with poultry.

Flocks should also be fenced off to separate them from wild birds.

'No alarm'

An NFU spokesman said: "Although the case which is in the news has been dealt with, all restrictions lifted on the farm and should cause no alarm to egg producers or to consumers, it is pertinent time to remind all poultry keepers to adhere to the strict biosecurity requirements set out by the Scottish government to ensure Scottish eggs are of the highest quality, health and safety standards.

"As the laboratory results confirmed a mild strain of non-notifiable avian influenza has been found, the restrictions on the site have now been lifted."

The union said farmers should regularly check the health of their birds, observe them closely and report any signs of disease to a vet.

The Scottish government also confirmed restrictions put in place at the farm had been lifted following tests.

A spokesman said: "We are aware of a case of avian influenza on a premise in Scotland following routine investigations.

"Laboratory results have confirmed a mild strain of non-notifiable avian influenza has been found. Given the results, the restrictions on the site have now been lifted."

In December, all 27,000 birds at a commercial poultry farm in Suffolk were culled after a number were found to have the H5 strain of avian flu, identified as "low pathogenic".

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