Second outbreak of bird flu confirmed at Redgrave

The scene of the initial bird flu outbreak at Redgrave. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

The scene of the initial bird flu outbreak at Redgrave. Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

About 55,000 birds will be culled after a second outbreak of bird flu was confirmed near the village of Redgrave, near Diss.

Defra has confirmed the H5N8 strain of the avian influenza virus has been identified on a premises near Redgrave during its investigations following a recent nearby case, which prompted the culling of 23,000 birds at a unit operated by Banham Poultry in February.

Regarding the new outbreak, a spokesman for Banham Group confirmed the second infected premises 'is not owned or operated by Banham Group'.

A Defra statement says: 'Defra's routine investigations following a confirmed case of H5N8 near Redgrave in Suffolk have led to the detection of the virus at a further separate premises.

'Due to the unacceptable high risk and to contain the possible spread of avian flu, the UK's deputy chief veterinary officer has today confirmed that proactive culling of around 55,000 birds will take place.

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'The premises will then be cleansed and disinfected, further reducing the risk to other birds. A 3km Protection Zone and a 10km Surveillance Zone are already in place following the previous case in the area. Our investigations will continue and the restrictions already placed on the site will remain in force until cleansing and disinfection is finished and the investigation is complete.'

Although the infection can be fatal for birds, Public Health England said the risk to public health from the virus is 'very low' and the Food Standards Agency stressed that bird flu does not pose a food safety risk for UK consumers.

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