The Council is extremely thankful to bird keepers in Ceredigion who have worked hard to keep the cases of avian flu out of any flocks in the area.
The compulsory housing measures for poultry lifted in Wales on the 18 April 2023; however the disease has not gone away.
Unfortunately, there are several cases in neighbouring authorities meaning that it’s just as important for bird keepers to ensure rigorous biosecurity measures and remain vigilant.
In order to prevent any disease in flocks of commercial poultry or back yard flocks it is a mandatory requirement that a range of biosecurity measures are in place by all poultry keepers in Ceredigion to reduce the risk and spread of any disease which is the best defence.
Poultry keepers must:
- Disinfect and clean clothing after contact with poultry.
- Minimise the movement of people/vehicles to and from areas accommodating poultry.
- Cleanse and maintain poultry accommodation on a regular basis and ensure wild birds cannot get access through any holes. Cleanse the hard surfaces and equipment such as feeders and egg trays. Follow the correct dilution rate for disinfectant used.
- Reduce contact between poultry and wild birds. Ensure wild birds cannot gain access to the poultry feed and water supply in which they could contaminate.
- Provide disinfectant areas at housing/accommodation of poultry entry and exit points.
- Control rodents as mice and other rodents can carry disease, therefore an effective pest control system should be implemented. Ensure a safe procedure of rodenticide is conducted if poison is used.
- Completing the mandatory biosecurity self-assessment can help keepers identify the measures needed to be taken. The assessment can be found here: Biosecurity Self-assessment Checklist
- Stay vigilant and aware for signs of disease of bird flu, and dead wild birds. Signs of avian influenza in birds include sudden death, swollen head, lethargic, drooping wings, dragging of the legs, breathing gurgling rattling sound, fever, watery droppings.
For clarification, some species such as ducks and geese may carry the disease without showing any signs of illness.
Councillor Matthew Vaux, Cabinet Member for Public Protection, said: “We are grateful to bird keepers in Ceredigion for taking action to prevent the spread of the disease. It is still just as important to follow protective measures and report any suspected cases of Avian Influenza.”
Any keeper who has a flock of over 50 birds must register their birds with the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA): APHA Registration
A new case of Avian Influenza H5N1 has been identified near Newtown in Powys on 27 April 2023. Therefore, it is vitally important than keepers in Ceredigion stay vigilant.
If you see signs of disease, or suspect that individual birds/flocks are ill or diseased, please call APHA immediately on 0300 303 8268 and the Public Protection team at Ceredigion County Council on 01545 570881.
For more information, visit the Welsh Government’s website: Avian Influenza Latest Update