DEFRA Advice – avian influenza

Images shows three swans and a duck next to water

DEFRA has advised the council of a positive case of avian influenza in a wild bird carcass on Islay. DEFRA is responsible for sampling and analysis of dead birds. The council has made them aware of reports of dead birds along the Kintyre, Islay and other west coast shorelines. We will continue to do all that we as a council can do to support the area. Whilst this is low risk to public health, the council advise the public and poultry keepers to follow this DEFRA guidance:

Advice for the Public

  • Do not pick up or touch sick, dying or dead birds, and keep pets away from them.
  • If you find three dead wild waterfowl (swans, geese or ducks), a single dead bird of prey, or five or more dead wild birds of any other species (including gulls) at the same place at the same time, you should report them to Defra’s national GB telephone helpline: 03459 33 55 77
  • Where dead wild birds are not required for surveillance purposes, it is the landowner’s responsibility to safely dispose of the carcasses. 
  • Bird keepers should follow good biosecurity measures at premises where poultry are kept 
  • You can find more information about avian flu here: Avian influenza (bird flu): how to spot and report the disease – (

Poultry Keepers

  • Poultry keepers who are in control of 50 or more birds are obliged by law to register their flocks regardless of whether they are domestic or commercial, however, keepers with less than 50 birds are  advised to register their poultry and captive birds on the GB Poultry Register.  This will bring them into the information matrix to ensure that they receive up-to-date information on disease alerts.
  • Maintain good biosecurity measures to protect your poultry from disease

For more information see Avian influenza (bird flu) – GOV.UK (

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