Avian Influenza is a highly contagious viral infection of birds and is classed as a notifiable disease. It is a legal requirement to report suspected cases to the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA). In the UK there are two notifiable diseases, Avian Influenza (AI), and Newcastle Disease. These diseases have a potential to severely impact on international trade, public health, animal welfare and wider society. Avian Influenza can be either highly pathogenic (HPAI) or low pathogenic (LPAI).
Avian Influenza is commonly carried by waterfowl such as ducks and geese. During the bird migratory season the UK bird population is at higher risk and the public are advised to take greater precautions to limit contact between their poultry and wild waterfowl.