Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Suspected Avian Influenza in Fife  (Read 3023 times)


  • Joined Jan 2012
Suspected Avian Influenza in Fife
« on: January 11, 2016, 11:04:11 am »
Hi folks,
You may have heard the news that broke last night about the suspected bird flu in a poultry farm near Dunfermline. If anyone is wondering where to get the original press release for information (and also a link to the relevant biosecurity advice in Scotland) please see here. The link to the advice is at the bottom of the article. I post it here since a lot of smallholder poultry keepers will have less than 50 birds and won't be registered with APHA, so they won't be aware of you to be able to contact you directly.
If anyone in the local area of Fife has concerns, please do contact:
Your own vet if you are worried about your birds - if they are ill, discuss it with your vet by telephone, who may then refer your to the APHA if needed
Your local APHA office (previously known as the Animal Health Office) if you would like further information about the exclusion zone around the farm and what restrictions might apply to you, or if you cannot get a hold of your own vet when your birds are showing signs of illness. Here are the telephone numbers (scroll down almost to the bottom for Scottish offices).
Most importantly - be calm but vigilant. It is always a concern when a bird flu outbreak occurs, but the last three in the UK have been controlled extremely quickly. This flu is not currently suspected to be a particular human health concern, and given previous experience, will probably be controlled very promptly too. Simply make yourself aware and keep up-to-date on any temporary rules on transporting poultry, chicks, eggs, feed or litter out of the local exclusion zone, keep an eye on your chickens and contact your vet promptly if you have any concerns. Read the biosecurity advice and see if there are any tips you can apply to your own premises, now and in the future, and keep abreast of any other developments and press releases, as any of this information may be updated or changed depending on further developments.
Hope this helps,


  • Joined Aug 2010
  • leslie, fife
  • i have chickens, sheep and opinions!!!
Re: Suspected Avian Influenza in Fife
« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2016, 02:56:08 pm »
@bigchicken have you seen this!!!


  • Joined Sep 2012
  • Angus
Re: Suspected Avian Influenza in Fife
« Reply #2 on: January 11, 2016, 04:09:11 pm »
A friend of mine has just moved to France and she is saying that there are out breaks in France as well, I am registered as have more than 50 birds but as yet haven't received any notification,
pygmy goats, gsd, border collie, scots dumpys, cochins, araucanas, shetland ducks and geese,  marrans, and pea fowl in a pear tree.


  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Suspected Avian Influenza in Fife
« Reply #3 on: January 11, 2016, 04:22:25 pm »

Thank you Caroline.  We have only a dozen hens so would not have received notification.

It's also worth remembering to have a 'flu jab yourself if you work with poultry.  This helps to eliminate the crossing of 'flu types, human and bird.
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  • Joined Jan 2012
Re: Suspected Avian Influenza in Fife
« Reply #4 on: January 11, 2016, 04:31:21 pm »
Yes, France tend to get more outbreaks than we do,as do a lot of other EU countries. It's a nuisance for them. You feel for the poor farms who have had such bad luck.
Your avatar bio shows as Angus, which is too far from Dunfermline to be likely to hear directly from APHA just now. It's well outside the control zone, which is only 1km around the outbreak, so generally the advice outwith the locality of the outbreak is not to worry, to read the biosecurity tips in case there are any you can apply yourself in the future, and just to be vigilant. I wouldn't expect any direct contact to poultry premises in Angus just now - the Chief Veterinary officer has just advised poultry keepers to stay aware of the situation.
The three outbreaks in England over the past couple of years didn't lead to any wider spread, and of course, those of you who remember the infamous "Cellardyke swan" from years ago will remember that a control zone was put in place then too, but luckily no further infection was found.
Hope this clarifies the situation - it's just a case of "don't worry but be aware".
« Last Edit: January 11, 2016, 04:36:32 pm by CarolineR »


  • Joined Jan 2012
Re: Suspected Avian Influenza in Fife
« Reply #5 on: January 11, 2016, 04:34:43 pm »
Oh, forgot to mention, the reason they ask poultry premises all over the country to be vigilant is because wild birds can spread it.
But as you can see, bird flu is rare (we test wild birds found dead for bird flu, and it is extremely rare to find it) which is why they also tell people not to worry.


  • Joined Nov 2008
  • Fife Scotland
Re: Suspected Avian Influenza in Fife
« Reply #6 on: January 11, 2016, 10:22:19 pm »
Aye the bigchicken has seen this, it all just a bit to close.
Shetland sheep, Castlemilk Moorits sheep, Hebridean sheep, Scots Grey Bantams, Scots Dumpy Bantams. Shetland Ducks.


  • Joined Jan 2012
Re: Suspected Avian Influenza in Fife
« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2016, 04:34:14 pm »
Hi folks,

There's a new press release out on the government website.

In  nutshell, the press release states that a VERY MILD strain of H5N1 avian influenza has been identified on the farm by initial test results. This is less serious than other forms of H5N1 that have caused concern in recent years. It is important to note that this strain is NOT the same H5N1 strain that has been headline-grabbing around the world during the last ten years including Scotland in 2006 (The "Cellardyke swan" had a more serious strain, and still didn't come to anything, which was nice).

This one is a "low pathogenic" (doesn't cause disease as badly) strain affecting birds, and is much milder than these other H5N1 viruses that you are used to hearing about, which are "highly pathogenic" (cause worse disease) and have caused human infection. This current strain is carried by wild birds, without causing disease in them, and occasionally spills over into poultry. There have been a small number of isolated cases of this type of flu elsewhere in Europe in recent years and these have not spread.

Thought I'd just put this up here, to let people go to the original source press release from the government, because I'm sure that there will be a bit of sensational media hoopla in some places! So it's important to hear the unembellished version, and to remember that, while it seems to be H5N1, it isn't the same as the usual headline-grabbing H5N1 that you're used to hearing about.

Hope this helps!


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