West Berkshire Council

Poultry owners advised to keep birds indoors

Poultry owners should keep poultry and other captive birds indoors to reduce the risk of Avian Influenza.

STOCK IMAGE - Chicken on a farm

Poultry owners across West Berkshire should keep poultry and other captive birds indoors or take the appropriate steps to keep them apart from wild birds for the next 30 days.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has issued the advice as a precautionary measure in order to reduce the risk of Avian Influenza (H5N8) affecting poultry in England.

Advice issued by DEFRA states:

Poultry keepers are advised to be vigilant for any signs of disease in their birds and 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, including:

  • cleansing and disinfecting clothing, footwear, equipment and vehicles before and after contact with poultry - if practical, use disposable protective clothing

  • reducing the movement of people, vehicles or equipment to and from areas where poultry are kept to minimise contamination from manure, slurry and other products and using effective vermin control

  • thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting housing at the end of a production cycle

  • keeping fresh disinfectant at the right concentration at all points where people should use it, such as farm entrances and before entering poultry housing or enclosures

  • minimising direct and indirect contact between poultry and wild birds, including making sure all feed and water is not accessible to wild birds

Public Health England has advised that the risk to public health is very low.

Anyone who is concerned or has any questions should contact West Berkshire Council's trading standards team on 01635 519930.

You can find out more on the DEFRA website.