Avian Flu

Important Information

Many of you will be aware of Avian (Bird Flu) from recent news, or the unfortunate sights of dead birds whilst out on a beach or walking your dog with the family.

 

Whilst it is deeply saddening to see birds washing up on our beaches and laying at the sides of our roads, it is extremely important that you follow the official guidelines and do not go near a dead bird or touch it.

 

Please take extra care when allowing children or dogs to roam freely, some strains of bird flu can pass to humans but this is very rare. Find out more at: bird flu and human health

You can find the recent NatureScot update here.

 

Please read the Scottish Government's guidance online and notify the relevant authority using the following phone number:

 

Telephone: 03459 33 55 77

 

Avian influenza (bird flu): how to spot and report the disease - gov.scot (www.gov.scot)

 

What is avian influenza?

Avian influenza is a virus that causes disease in birds. Poultry, pigeons and wild or migratory birds, such as ducks, can become infected with the virus. There are two forms of the virus: high pathogenicity (HPAI) and low pathogenicity (LPAI).

Why are we worried?

Britain's seabird populations are of global significance with the UK holding 56% of the worlds northern gannet population and Scotland holding 46% of the world’s northern gannets and 60% of the world’s great skuas. Both these species are amber listed in Birds of Conservation Concern 5. Outbreaks can rapidly result in epidemics among bird populations. Public health authorities are concerned about the potential of the virus to mutate into subtypes capable of causing human disease. As a result they warn there is always a threat of a new influenza pandemic emerging.