As you may be aware there has been a recent report of an outbreak of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) H5N1 in commercial poultry in the Woodhall Spa area.
A 3km Protection Zone and 10km Surveillance Zone has been declared around the premises. County Council Trading Standards Teams are working with partners, to try to deal with this and another case outside of the district.
In these areas
Trading Standards officers will be carrying out patrols in each 3 km zone. This is an information gathering exercise to identify all keepers of captive birds and to ensure keepers are aware of the rules that are in place. Where that 3km protection zone covers more urban areas, the likelihood that birds are being kept there decreases and the number of properties to visit vastly increases. So, our partners are doing a letter drop in those 3km zones, with advice and a link to an online form so people can report any birds they keep directly to the county council. Visits and advice will then be prioritised to those bird keepers. This information is also used by the Animal and Plant Health Agency to make sure that disease has not spread. In these areas keepers must keep a close watch on their birds for any signs of disease, and seek prompt advice from a vet if they have any concerns. Clinical signs indicative of avian influenza must be reported in England to Defra Rural Services Helpline on 03000 200 301.
Keepers of birds can check where disease control zones and regional Avian Influenza Protection Zones (AIPZs) are located in GB and if they are in a zone on the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) interactive map, and in Northern Ireland on DAERA’s interactive map.
Outside these areas
The rest of Lincolnshire is in an Avian Influenza Prevention Zone. It is now a legal requirement for all bird keepers in the UK to follow strict biosecurity measures to help protect their flocks from the threat of avian flu. This is now the largest ever UK outbreak of avian influenza (prior to this the largest number of cases was 26 cases in 2020/2021 and 13 cases in 2016/2017).
Advice can be found here: Avian influenza (bird flu) - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).
General public advice: Reporting dead wild birds
- Do not touch or pick up any dead or visibly sick birds that you find.
- You should call the Defra helpline (03459 33 55 77) if you find:
- one or more dead bird of prey or owl
- 3 or more dead gulls or wild waterfowl (swans, geese and ducks)
- 5 or more dead birds of any species
The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) has said that avian influenza is primarily a disease of birds and the risk to the general public’s health is very low. The regional UKHSA Health Protection Teams are working closely with Defra to monitor the situation and will be providing health advice to persons at the infected premises as a precaution.
The Food Standards Agency has said that on the basis of the current scientific evidence, avian influenza poses a very low food safety risk for UK consumers. Properly cooked poultry and poultry products, including eggs, are safe to eat.
We have a page on the East Lindsey Website which provides links to the current situation on the government website. Bird Flu Update - East Lindsey District Council (e-lindsey.gov.uk)