Lockdown is Coming - Act Now!
All poultry producers MUST have implemented enhanced biosecurity measures following the announcement of the Avian Influenza Prevention Zone covering the whole of the UK on 11th November.
Today there is no excuse for lapses in biosecurity. ALL staff must be aware of best practice in relation to biosecurity and every effort must be made to prevent the inadvertent introduction of flu (or any other infections) into commercial poultry premises. This should include practical training, provision of protective clothing, and maintenance of infrastructure, particularly in this case step-over barriers, roofs and guttering.
As the threat of flu has increased a housing order has been announced which will come into force on 14th December. Whilst this has been largely welcomed by free range producers it is important to remember that this is not a silver bullet for disease control. Cases of flu are commonly associated with housed birds (for example breeders), and we all know that stressed birds are more susceptible to succumbing to disease.
Producers have been offered a window, between now and the 14th December, to ease their birds into mandatory housing. It is important that free range producers act now to smooth the transition to housing. The following steps are recommended:
Please take a moment today to critically assess your biosecurity, make improvements and also to plan for how to keep you flocks happy and healthy when they are subjected to long-term housing on 14th December.