Trading Standards is reminding Northamptonshire bird keepers that they need to protect their birds from avian flu.
The reminder comes after The Chief Vets from England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland urged bird keepers across the UK to maintain and strengthen their biosecurity measures in order to prevent further outbreaks of avian influenza.
There are some simple measures that all bird keepers should take to protect their birds against the threat of avian flu in the coming winter months, whether they are running a large commercial farm, keeping a few hens in their back garden or rearing game birds. These include:
- Keeping the area where birds live clean and tidy, controlling rats and mice and regularly cleansing and disinfecting any hard surfaces.
- Cleaning footwear before and after visits.
- Placing birds’ feed and water in fully enclosed areas that are protected from wild birds, and removing any spilled feed regularly.
- Putting fencing around outdoor areas where birds are allowed and limiting their access to ponds or areas visited by wild waterfowl.
- Where possible, avoid keeping ducks and geese with other poultry species.
Cabinet member for environment and place Councillor Jason Smithers, said: “Whether you are a farmer or you just have a few chickens in your garden it’s vital that you follow the guidance and do what you can to prevent the introduction of disease.
“At this stage it is simply a preventative measure, but it is important that people comply so that we can minimise the risk of this avian flu strain spreading. Check the gov.uk website for guidance on what you need to do or speak to your vet for further advice.”
Bird keepers can find the latest advice on the gov.uk website.