THE CHIEF VETERINARY OFFICER for Wales, Christianne Glossop has confirmed the presence of avian influenza H5N1 in poultry and wild birds at a premises in the Wrexham County Borough area.
Temporary Disease Control zones of 3km and 10km have been imposed around the small infected poultry premises, to limit the risk of disease spread. A veterinary investigation is underway, however, dead wild birds found in the area have tested positive for the virus and are believed to be the source of infection.
The risk to public health from the virus is considered to be very low and these cases do not pose a food safety risk for UK consumers.
Members of the public are encouraged to not pick up or touch any sick or dead birds and instead contact the Defra helpline on 03459 33 55 77.
The last recorded case of avian influenza in Wales was in January this year. Today’s confirmation follows the announcement of similar findings of avian influenza in the UK and Europe.
All keepers are strongly advised to be vigilant for signs of the disease such as increased mortality or respiratory distress. If keepers have any concerns about the health of their birds, they are encouraged to seek prompt advice from their veterinary surgeon.
The Chief Veterinary Officer for Wales, Christianne Glossop, said: “Avian Influenza has been found in poultry and wild birds in the Wrexham area. This is further evidence of the need for all keepers of poultry and captive birds to ensure they have the very highest levels of biosecurity in place.
“Public Health Wales has said the risk to the health of the public from Avian Influenza is very low and the Food Standards Agency has made clear it does not pose a food safety risk for UK consumers.
“Temporary control zones have been imposed to help prevent further spread of the disease.
“Suspicion of avian influenza or any other notifiable disease must be reported to the Animal and Plant Health Agency immediately.”