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This winter, poultry farmers have been affected by the outbreak of avian flu, which has resulted in even free range birds having to be caged to keep them away from possible infection from their wild cousins.
Being the legal owner of a farm or other premises in which birds are kept, it is your responsibility to take the appropriate steps to make sure that it is - most importantly - safe for visitors and that you have an adequate amount of physical notices and signs to inform the public of potential hazards.
No-one knows where avian flu originates from, but it has affected birdlife around the globe. Although most strains do not affect humans, there are a couple, H5N1 and H7N9, that do, and have proved fatal to humans, though, as yet, not in the UK.
The seriousness of avian flu is the reason why the government has taken strict precautionary measures. Thankfully, the UK’s ‘Avian Influenza Prevention Zone’ has now been lifted in almost all areas of the country,
with the exception of two premises in Lancashire. However, it is still expected that all keepers of poultry follow the best practice guidelines and remain vigilant for any future signs of biosecurity breaches.
Click here to see the up-to-date status in the UK.
There is still a ban on poultry gatherings across much of the north of the UK, including Lancashire, Blackpool, Wyre, Fylde, Preston, Sefton, and West Lancashire, which will affect all events with livestock from trade fairs to bird shows.
Avian Flu Signage
When working on your farm, it can be easy to forget the smaller things that protect the safety of your livestock, so you need a sign that stands out to ensure people take notice of it.