A second case of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) H5N1 (bird flu) has been confirmed in a poultry flock in Co. Monaghan.

It’s the second case of the virus detected in the area, with a previous positive result in a turkey flock in the same county.

The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) is currently engaged in the depopulation of the first flock to reduce the risk of spread in what is high density poultry area.

A second poultry (broiler breeder) flock in the area has been confirmed positive for H5N1, which will also be depopulated.

Bird flu containment measures

In addition, the department has said that it has been working to mitigate the risk of spread of the disease through the establishment of a 10km restriction zone to control the movement of poultry and poultry products to and from the restriction zone around the restricted holding, and where additional surveillance measures have been put in place.

As a precautionary measure, the DAFM has introduced three Statutory Instruments under the Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013 to protect the poultry industry.

These include a requirement to house or confine all poultry or captive birds, such that wild birds and other animals do not have access to them, and also the application of particular biosecurity measures for poultry and other captive birds, as well as a ban on the assembly of birds.

Since November, HPAI H5N1 has been confirmed by the Department in 49 wild birds in counties Kerry, Donegal, Galway, Offaly, Roscommon, Tipperary, Wexford, Waterford and Longford under its Avian Influenza surveillance programme.