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Turkey farmers on alert for bird flu outbreaks

Turkey farmers on alert for bird flu outbreaks

The Department of Agriculture and farmers are closely observing flocks following a confirmed outbreak of Avian Influenza H5N1 in turkeys last week.

With a month to go until Christmas, this comes at a difficult time for turkey farmers as flocks are yet not ready for processing.

Also known as “bird flu” the disease is not thought to be harmful to humans but is usually fatal to birds. 

Poultry farmers have been advised to look for signs in birds including swelling and discolouration. Bird flu is thought to be spread by wild birds migrating. Recent outbreaks have been confirmed in in wild birds in Galway, Limerick, Offaly, Donegal, Roscommon, Tipperary, Wexford and Waterford. 

However, the bird flu case on turkey farm in Monaghan shows free range turkeys are more susceptible rather than those kept inside. 

Monaghan now has a 3km restriction zone in operation along with a 10km surveillance area. Poultry feed movement will not be restricted unless the premises are infected.

Members of the public are being advised not to touch sick or dead wild birds, including ducks, geese, swans, gulls or birds of prey. 

LSL News

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