Bird Flu: Tories call for Wales to follow England-wide rule to keep birds indoors
Welsh Conservatives have called for a Wales-wide housing order to tackle bird flu, echoing policy in England.
Wales is currently not sharing England’s mandatory legal requirement for birdkeepers to house the creatures indoors amid the UK’s largest-ever outbreak of avian influenza.
The mandatory housing measures for all poultry and captive birds were introduced across England earlier this week.
There have been more than 200 cases of avian influenza – also known as bird flu – confirmed in the UK since late October 2021, with a fresh case identified in Flintshire on 7 November.
Following a Senedd update earlier this week on the spread of Avian Flu in Wales, Samuel Kurtz, Shadow Rural Affairs Minister, called for a Wales-wide housing order.
Repeating the call, he said: “With the way avian flu has spread across the UK between wild birds and commercial fowl, a pre-emptive housing order in Wales would give Welsh businesses some level of certainty in an uncertain situation.
“Avian flu doesn’t respect borders, and with so many units close to the English border, and with the potential for further wild bird migration, the Welsh Government’s decision has left Welsh poultry vulnerable to infection.”
A Welsh Government spokesman previously said mandatory housing of poultry would not be introduced in Wales at this stage.
The spokesman said: “We will continue to monitor the situation in Wales. All keepers must keep their birds safe by rigorously applying the biosecurity measures in the Wales avian influenza prevention zone, and be vigilant for signs of the disease.”
Support our Nation today
For the price of a cup of coffee a month you can help us create an independent, not-for-profit, national news service for the people of Wales, by the people of Wales.