Above: Newcastle Disease precautions for bird gatherings have affected entries to some of the large shows. At the recent Budgerigar Society Club Show held at The Dome, Doncaster (pictured), the BS lost out on about seven regular overseas exhibitors and an estimated loss of 100 benched birds
CLICK HERE to download a Newcastle Disease declaration form. Please edit the form to include the name of your club/show and event date before printing.
ALL EXHIBITORS TO bird gatherings and shows must sign a declaration to confirm their birds have not been outside of the UK within the past 21 days.
The advice comes from DEFRA/the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) following the recent outbreaks of Newcastle Disease in small poultry flocks, commercial layers and other captive birds in Belgium, Luxemburg and the Netherlands. APHA says it is event organisers’ responsibility to collect completed and signed declarations and store the information in line with the current regulations and requirements of the General Licence.
The completed forms must be handed to the bio-security officer on arrival outside the entrance to the event.
The risk of a Newcastle Disease outbreak in the UK remains at medium, which means “outbreak likely to occur”. This highly contagious disease is transmitted through infected birds’ droppings and secretions from the nostrils, mouth and eyes. Newcastle Disease is spread primarily through direct contact between healthy stock and the bodily discharges of infected birds.
APHA has advised that subject to extra vigilance and rigid compliance with the bio-security plan, as required by the current General Licence, shows and gatherings can still take place. Birds can continue to be imported to the UK, but under government guidelines cannot be exhibited if a bird has been purchased or travelled from outside the UK within a period of 21 days prior to a show, or if it shows signs of the disease.
DEFRA’s Philip Boyce told Cage & Aviary Birds that APHA is liaising directly with birdkeeping exhibits and shows on this issue, and that “this is a standard approach taken across the UK including by the Devolved Authorities in Scotland and Wales.”
Birdkeepers can be kept informed about the wider risk status of Newcastle Disease at: www.gov.uk/guidance/newcastle-disease and the latest published risk assessment: www.gov.uk/government/publications/newcastle-disease-in-belgium
● You can download the Newcastle Disease declaration from the link above or request a copy via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
For more news from Cage & Aviary Birds, click here.