Infectious Diseases 2007

Infectious Diseases 2007

UK: More turkeys to be culled as precaution

14 November, 2007

Defra are to cull four more turkey flocks as potentially “dangerous contacts” close to the latest outbreak of avian influenza. The four new premises are Stone House Farm in West Harling and Bridge Farm, Pulham, both in Norfolk; Grove Farm in Botesdale and Hill Meadow in Knettishall, both in Suffolk.
It was decided to slaughter a total of 23,000 turkeys, which are linked to the source of the first case of the H5N1 strain of avian influenza as a precaution.
An official with Defra said that the birds in the four flocks to be culled are not showing signs of the disease but the culling will be carried as soon as possible to prevent potential spread of the virus.
All the flocks are within the existing restriction zone, which covers the whole of Suffolk and three districts in Norfolk - South Norfolk, Breckland and Norwich.
The “dangerous contact” cull only involves turkeys and it is thought that most of the flocks are linked to the Woodbridge-based Gressingham Foods operations.
No decision has yet been taken about the 30,000 geese which are being reared for the Christmas market by Gressingham Foods, which owns Redgrave Poultry.

Defra confirmed there are more than four million turkeys, chickens, ducks and geese on the GB Poultry Register within the current surveillance zone, with a further 25 million birds registered in the wider restricted area. 

This is the fourth case of avian influenza this year:

February 2007 - H5N1 Avian Influenza in poultry, Upper Holton, Suffolk (The distance between the location of the current outbreak, at Diss, and the outbreak in Upper Holton, Halesworth, Suffolk- is about 16 miles [25 Km])

May 2007 - H7N2 Low Pathogenic Avian Influenza in Corwen, Conwy, North  Wales  

June 2007 - H7 avian influenza near St Helens, Merseyside, England