Dealing with the effects of Covid lockdown has been tough enough, but for poultry farmers in Wales there is a second viral challenge on their doorstep – bird flu.
Following a bird flu outbreak in November 2020, a nationwide lockdown has been in place since December, forcing all captive birds to stay indoors.
Any farms testing positive for the virus face a complete cull of their flock.
Poultry farmer Victoria Shervington-Jones, from Wentlooge near Newport, said the restrictions have been “a double-whammy”.
“We’re locked down and now the birds are locked down to go with it,” she said.
The spread is being managed by keeping captive birds in bio-secure units which stop wild birds mixing with them and spreading the virus.
Wales’ chief vet Dr Christianne Glossop said Covid meant the bird flu message “hasn’t really hit the headlines”.
“It’s so important for anyone with birds to follow our requirements to bring them indoors… to keep them separate from any contact, direct or indirect, with wild birds,” she added.
The UK government said the risk of avian flu to humans was very low and that eating eggs and poultry products posed a very low risk to people.
Filmed and edited by Nick Hartley
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