Cumbria County Council brings in measures due to bird flu

Birds are being culled and access to part of Cumbria is restricted after cases of avian flu were identified in the county.

Cumbria County Council urged people not to touch dead birds and said further testing was under way after the discovery of the cases.

The authority said a 3km protection zone and 10km surveillance zone had been introduced following the cases being identified near Silecroft, Copeland.

In a series of messages posted on the council’s Twitter page, a spokesman  said: “Avian influenza H5N1 (Bird Flu) has been confirmed in birds at premises near Silecroft, Copeland, Cumbria.

“Further testing is under way to confirm the pathogenicity of the strain.

“If you find any dead birds, please report to Defra on 03459335577.

“DO NOT touch or pick them up.

“Avian Influenza is a disease which mainly affects birds, but on rare occasions, it can affect mammals including humans.

“However, the risk to public health from avian flu is very low.

“Several precautionary measures have been put in place – including a 3km protection zone, a 10km surveillance zone and the humane culling of birds at risk of infection.

“The zones restrict access to locations where birds are kept and impose restrictions on the movement of birds.

“They do not limit access to residents or business owners.

“Temporary road signs will be put in place along the zone boundaries for awareness.

“Birdkeepers should remain vigilant for any signs of disease and report any suspected cases to their nearest Animal and Plant Health Agency office.”

The Westmorland Gazette | News