Wexford case of bird flu part of “highly pathogenic strain”

The Department of Agriculture say it is the same strain confirmed in the UK

Wexford case of bird flu part of “highly pathogenic strain”

Brent Geese in flight over Bull Island in Dublin | Image: RollingNews.ie

The Department of Agriculture say a case of bird flu discovered in Co Wexford is part of a “highly pathogenic strain”.

The case was found on December 28th and is subtype H5N8 detected in wild birds.

 The department say the same strain has previously been confirmed in the UK and mainland Europe.

 This is the only case detected in Ireland so far.

However the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) has reiterated that the risk to humans is considered to be very low.

Several European countries - including Germany, Poland and Denmark - have confirmed cases of H5N8 since it was discovered in a wild swan in Hungary in October.

The department says it continues to monitor the situation - and notes the deteriorating weather forecast for continental Europe this week.

“The department reiterates once again the requirement to confine poultry and other birds, and to apply strict bio-security measures to prevent the introduction of avian influenza.

“Poultry flock owners should remain vigilant for any signs of disease in their flocks, and report any disease suspicion to their nearest Department Veterinary Office”, the department adds in a statement.