Avian Influenza current advice from the APHA (Defra)

Speaking to the office of the Animal & Plant Agency today it is recommended that all BKA members & Supporters should read the content of the guidance and make themselves aware of the interactive map by clicking on the link

The BKA is now in a dilemma in connection with their next meeting to be held on Sunday 20th November 2022. on the one hand the Cowdray Hall RM20 3JE is not in a protection zone nor in a mandatory housing zone. In theory the BKA are able to proceed with theory show but the BKA has been advised that the procedure for accepting birds at our show may be difficult to monitor since bird keepers from Norfolk, Suffolk and parts Essex (see the interactive map) may find they are contravening the spirit of the current recommendations by moving their birds from a mandatory housing zone. I understand from my telephone conversation that there are no such zones in Kent or London but that the zones do extend to areas such as Basildon and Canvey Island although the latter areas don’t seem to be featured on the interactive map?

Interesting to note that there was apparently a blanket zone imposed on the movement of birds between 29th November 2021 & 2nd May 2022 and the admin officer within the APHA was not aware neither was the BKA since we held our February and April 2022 meetings without hindrancc.

Registration: you should register your poultry even if only kept as pets. however there seems to a contradiction in the APHA advice in that they go onto say this is a requirement if you have more than 50 birds then defining birds as poultry including chickens, ducks, turkeys, geese, pigeon (bred for meat). partridge, quail, guinea fowl & pheasants (not sure what they mean when they mention pets!!!)

Mandatory housing measures for all poultry and captive birds in Norfolk, Suffolk & parts of Essex came into force at 00.01 on 12th October 2022.

The opinion expressed by some in this hobby & industry of ours is that it seems that the question of immunity has been ignored. It seems that if the disease is found in a flock of chickens or worse still rare birds a cull takes place destroying the genetics of the rare birds therefore hampering the requirement to maintain the species or in fact killing all chickens or turkeys within a flock and not allowing those which would have survived to carry forward an immunity in their offspring. It makes one wonder if the APHA decisions are founded on fertile thoughts or just ignorance of keeping & maintaining birds. Vets do not know all the answers. It would be better for all concerned if Bird Breeders were represented on the various bodies comprising the APHA