A WHITE-TAILED Eagle found dead on the Isle of Skye has tested positive for Avian Influenza.

The adult bird was found at Trotternish on November 14 and according to SRUC’s pathology unit, it is the first confirmed case of Avian Influenza in the species in Scotland.

In Ireland, a dead Eagle was found near Tarbert in Co. Kerry, also in November, and elsewhere in Ireland in Donegal and Offaly, White-tailed Eagles have also confirmed positive for the H5N1 strain.

It is believed that the deaths may be linked to the fact that eagles predate and will eat carrion of Greylag Geese which are known to carry the disease.

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At Christmas, five cases of Avian Influenza had been confirmed in Scotland and more than 50 across the wider UK as it faces its largest ever outbreak of Avian Influenza.

Scotland’s Chief Veterinary Officer, Sheila Voas, has been persistently reminding poultry keepers to engage in scrupulous biosecurity measures toi protect their birds from disease.

Farmers and members of the public are urged not to touch or pick up any dead or sick birds that they find. If you find dead swans, geese or ducks or other dead wild birds, such as gulls or birds of prey, they should be reported to the Defra helpline on 03459 33 55 77.