Regulations for bird keepers extended

Published: 18 Jan 2017


Hertfordshire County Council’s Trading Standards service is highlighting that the temporary rules regarding the keeping of poultry and other captive birds have been extended until 28 February 2017.

On Wednesday 6 December the government’s Chief Veterinary Officer announced new regulations to help protect poultry from a strain of avian flu in Europe. These regulations have now been extended to the end of February and keepers of poultry and other captive birds are required to keep their birds indoors, or take appropriate steps to keep them separate from wild birds.

Poultry keepers are also advised to be vigilant for any signs of disease in their birds or any wild birds and seek prompt advice from their vet if they have any concerns. They can help prevent avian flu by maintaining good biosecurity on their premises. Advice on this can be found here

Richard Thake, Cabinet Member for Community Safety, said: “This doesn’t just apply to commercial poultry farms. Even if you just have a few chickens in your back garden the regulations apply. I would ask everyone to act responsibility and help prevent this infection becoming an issue in this country.”

Teresa Heritage, Cabinet Member for Public Health, said: “Avian flu is an infectious viral illness that spreads among birds. Public Health England has issued advice that the threat to human health remains very low. Also, on the basis of current scientific evidence, avian flu does not pose a food safety risk for UK consumers.”

Hertfordshire Trading Standards is also reminding people that you must register poultry flocks of 50 or more birds which you own or are responsible for. They don’t have to all be the same species. This applies even if your premises are only stocked for part of the year. Also, anyone with less than 50 birds is encouraged to voluntarily register so that you can receive updates quickly if there is an outbreak of disease.

Birds can be registered online here. Guidance and information can be obtained on the GB Poultry Register Helpline - 0800 634 1112.

If any members of the public are aware of instances of poultry and other captive birds being kept outside please let us know on 03454 040506 so that we can offer appropriate advice to the keepers.

For further information see www.gov.uk/guidance/avian-influenza-bird-flu

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