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Avian influenza : Housing order lifted from 18 April

The Chief Veterinary Officer has announced that mandatory housing measures for poultry and captive birds, which were introduced across England to help stop the spread of bird flu, will be lifted from 18 April, but scrupulous standards of biosecurity remain essential.

Following ongoing monitoring using the latest scientific evidence and a robust risk assessment, bird flu risk levels have been reduced meaning poultry and other captive birds will no longer need to be housed and can be kept outside, unless they are in a protection zone or captive bird monitoring controlled zone.

Those who intend to allow their birds outside are advised to use the upcoming days to prepare their outside areas for the release of their birds. This will include cleansing and disinfection of hard surfaces, fencing off ponds or standing water and reintroduction of wild bird deterrents.

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