As of Monday 17th of October 2022 at 12pm an Avian Influenza Prevention Zone (AIPZ) was declared across Northern Ireland.
This places a legal requirement on bird owners and keepers in Northern Ireland to follow strict biosecurity measures. This applies to you if keep birds commercially, pet birds or just a few birds in the garden as a hobby.
The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs have issued some tips to follow:
1. Clean your footwear before and after tending to your birds
2. Minimize movement in and out of the bird enclosures.
3. Humanely control rats and mice.
4. Disinfect hard surfaces regularly
5. Clean and disinfect vehicles that have come into contact with poultry.
6. Separating domestic waterfowl (ducks and geese) from other domestic species
At present, there is no requirement for poultry to be housed and bird gatherings are not prohibited at this stage, but this will be kept under constant review.
Avian Influenza is a notifiable disease which means anyone who may suspect an animal is affected must, by law, report it to their local DAERA Direct Office. As a bird owner it is vital you stay up to date and in line with current and important information release by governing bodies. You can register by contacting your local DAERA Direct office or online via the DAERA website or sign up to the text alert service simply by texting 'BIRDS OPT IN' to 07860 098672. This will allow you to receive immediate notification of any important disease information, allowing you to protect your flocks at the earliest opportunity. Text 'BIRDS OPT OUT' to 07860 098672, to STOP receiving these text messages.
DAERA AI biosecurity - self assessment/ checklist : https://www.daera-ni.gov.uk/publications/daera-ai-biosecurity-self-assessment?fbclid=IwAR1EmGLVHMNXGgQaOXmfvEcPKb1p0peHBKcZwI6cCX57GhWGQdaz1I96B_c