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Defra - Avian Influenza Latest Situation - 5 November 2021

Changes to the Bird Gatherings General License in force from 0:01 8th November 2021

  • Gatherings include (but are not limited to) bird fairs, markets, shows, sales, exhibitions, and some premises used for dealing or internet sales. In addition, vehicles used to transport live birds where the birds are brought together from multiple premises (so called many-to-one or many-to-many activities) are also considered gatherings. Gatherings are only permitted if licenced.

  • Bird gathering general licences have been made available by Defra, Scottish Government and Welsh Government permitting bird gatherings in England, Scotland and Wales respectively, provided they have been notified to the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) at least 7 days before the event and that the gathering meets all the requirements of the relevant general licence.

  • Changes to the bird gatherings general licence will come into force in all three GB administrations from 0:01 on the 8 November 2021.

  • From 00:01 on 8 November 2021 no gatherings of poultry, galliforme or anseriforme birds will bepermitted. Galliforme birds include pheasants, partridge, quail, chickens, turkey and guinea fowl. Anseriforme birds include ducks, geese and swans.

  • Gatherings of all other types of birds except poultry (Galliformes and Anseriformes) will bepermitted, provided that the APHA has been notified of the gathering at least 7 days before the event and that the gathering meets all the requirements of the general licence.

  • Further guidance for bird gatherings and a full list of what is permitted in England has been published by Defra on GOV.UK.

  • Equivalent changes are being made in Scotland and Wales, see the Scottish Government website and Welsh Government website for further information.

Update – Avian Influenza H5N1 in the Angus constituency, Scotland

  • Further testing has confirmed the case of Avian influenza H5N1 at a premises in the Angus constituency in Scotland to be a highly pathogenic strain (HPAI H5N1). Following confirmation of the pathogenicity, the Temporary Control Zones have been revoked and replaced by a 3km Protection Zone, 10km Surveillance Zone and 10km Restricted Zone.

  • See the Scottish Government website for further information

Bird keepers are reminded that an Avian Influenza Prevention Zone (AIPZ) has been declared across Great Britain effective from 5pm on 3 November 2021.

High standards of biosecurity must be maintained as good practice for the health of their birds, and that good biosecurity is an essential defence against diseases such as avian influenza and is key to limiting the spread of avian influenza in an outbreak.

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. In Wales, contact 0300 303 8268. In Scotland, contact to the local Field Services Office. Failure to do so is an offence.

Biosecurity guidance and information on the latest avian influenza situation are available at:

  • England: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/avian-influenza-bird-flu

  • Scotland: www.gov.scot/avianinfluenza

  • Wales: https://gov.wales/avian-influenza-bird-flu


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