Avian influenza case confirmed in Lancashire
A new case of H5N8 avian influenza has been confirmed in a flock of farmed breeding pheasants at premises in Wyre, Lancashire.
The flock, according to the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs, is estimated to contain approximately 10,000 birds. A number have died and the remaining live birds at the premises are being humanely culled.
A full investigation is now underway to determine the source of the infection. In the meantime, a 3km Protection Zone and a 10km Surveillance Zone have been put in place around the infected premises to limit the risk of the disease spreading.
The new outbreak follows a number of cases of H5N8 avian influenza this winter. On 16th December the first UK case was confirmed in turkeys at a farm in Lincolnshire. Further cases have since followed and the Avian Influenza Protection Zone, which has been in place since 6th December, has been extended to 28th February to help protect poultry and captive birds from the disease.
Public Health England has advised that the risk to public health remains very low and the Food Standards Agency has stated that bird flu does not pose a food safety risk for UK consumers.