Scotland’s chief veterinary officer is urging bird keepers to practice excellent biosecurity.

Sheila Voas took to social media when it was revealed avian flu has been confirmed in commercial laying premises in East Yorkshire.

The disease was confirmed at a commercial premises near Hutton this week, consisting of 48,000 birds.

A 3km protection zone and a 10km surveillance zone have been declared around the farm.

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All the poultry on site will be humanely culled, Defra confirmed as part of an online update on the UK's avian influenza situation.

It is the first case of bird flu in the UK in months. Since October 2023, only four cases have been confirmed in England, while Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland have recorded zero cases since then.

Ms Voas said: “A reminder to all with poultry, and other kept birds, that this disease hasn’t gone away and it’s important to continue to practice excellent biosecurity.”

In Wales, the ban on gatherings of Galliforme birds such as pheasants, chickens, and turkeys has been lifted.

After more than two years of not allowing gatherings, the second part of 2023 brought a change in the disease picture, with fewer infected premises and findings in wild birds. There have been no infected premises in Wales since April 2023.

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However, the risk levels are still considered to be too high for gatherings of Anseriforme birds such as ducks, geese, and swans, which will remain prohibited.

Chief veterinary officer for Wales, Dr Richard Irvine also urged strong biosecurity measures. He said: "This does not mean the risk of avian influenza has disappeared. Scrupulous hygiene and biosecurity are essential to protect flocks from the threat of disease, and it is important bird keepers continue to complete the biosecurity self-assessment checklist.

“All of our mitigation measures, including restrictions on bird gatherings, are kept under constant review, to help ensure the national flock is protected.”