Disease control zone declared in Preston, South Ribble and Fylde after Bird Flu outbreak at poultry farm

A disease control zone has been declared around Preston and the Fylde after Bird Flu was confirmed at a poultry farm on the outskirts of the city.

Saturday, 13th November 2021, 1:40 pm
Updated Saturday, 13th November 2021, 6:56 pm

The avian influenza had already been detected in Lancashire's wild bird populations earlier this week, but the highly pathogenic virus has now been confirmed at a farm in Salwick on the outskirts of Preston.

Defra said all birds on the infected farm will be culled and a disease control zone is now in force, encompassing the whole of the Fylde and Preston, as well as huge parts of South Ribble and Wyre.

The temporary control zone (see map) was declared at 8.30 last night (Friday, November 12) and stretches 10km (6.5 miles) in every direction from the farm, reaching as far as Bamber Bridge to the west, Lytham to the east, Catterall in the north and Much Hoole (South Ribble) to the south.

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Defra said all birds on the infected farm will be culled and a disease control zone encompassing the whole of the Fylde, Preston and South Ribble has been put in place

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Defra said cases of the avian flu were confirmed yesterday after vets were called to the farm to investigate reports of sick poultry.

A Defra spokesman said: "The Secretary of State has considered the findings of veterinary inquiries at a premises near Salwick, Fylde where avian influenza is suspected.

"The Chief Veterinary Officer suspects the presence of H5N1 avian influenza. To reduce the risk of the transmission of avian influenza, the Secretary of State declares as a Temporary Control Zone the areas around these premises (see map).

A Temporary Disease Control Zone has been declared around Preston and the Fylde after Bird Flu was detected at a poultry farm near Salwick yesterday (Friday, November 12) Pic: Defra

"These measures apply from 8.30pm on Friday, November 12, 2021 until this Declaration is withdrawn or amended by further declaration."

It affects all farms and businesses within the zone, where poultry or other captive birds are kept.

Strict measures introduced to prevent spread of disease in Lancashire

Measures are now in force to prevent contagion among Lancashire's poultry, captive birds and wild birds.

The avian influenza had already been detected in Lancashire's wild bird populations earlier this week, but the highly pathogenic virus has now been confirmed at a farm in Salwick on the outskirts of Preston

This includes:

- Ban on moving poultry, other captive birds or mammals from or to premises in the zone where poultry or other captive birds are kept - unless the movement is licensed by a veterinary inspector

- If licensed, poultry and eggs may be transported through the zone on a major highway or railway if no stop is made within the zone

- Poultry and captive birds must be 'housed' or 'isolated' from other poultry/birds on neighbouring premises

Further testing is underway to confirm the pathogenicity of the strain and all birds on the infected farm in the Fylde village of Salwick will be humanely culled, said Defra

- A person who enters or leaves premises in the zone by vehicle must cleanse and disinfect without delay any part of the vehicle which may have been contaminated

- Those who keep poultry/captive birds take "reasonable steps" to minimise their contact with wild birds

- All carcases not seized or disposed of by a veterinary inspector must be disposed of in accordance with a veterinary inspector’s instructions

- Poultry or other captive birds should not be collected together at any fair, market, show, exhibition or other gathering in the zone

- Game birds can not be released in the zone until the order is lifted

- Poultry must not be moved to a slaughterhouse unless a veterinary inspector has examined poultry at the premises no more than 24 hours before they leave the premises and the poultry are transported in vehicles sealed by the veterinary inspector or in accordance with his instructions

The 10km disease control zone now in force around the Fylde and Preston following confirmed cases of Bird Flu at a poultry farm near the village of Salwick yesterday (Friday, November 12)