Avian Influenza Prevention Zone in Northern Ireland lifted

Date published: 31 May 2023

The Avian Influenza Prevention Zone (AIPZ) in force across Northern Ireland and the ban on poultry gatherings will be lifted on 00:01 on Friday 02 June 2023.

DARD news

DAERA’s Chief Veterinary Officer (CVO), Robert Huey, made the announcement and thanked the poultry sector for their role in protecting the industry.

The measures, imposing a range of compulsory biosecurity measures on poultry flocks, were introduced on 17 October 2022. The aim of the AIPZ was to address the risk posed by avian influenza to the poultry sector and was a vital tool in protecting flocks across NI from the disease which was circulating in wild birds.

CVO Robert Huey said: “Thanks to the determined efforts from the poultry sector in Northern Ireland to protect their flocks and minimise the impact of disease, we are now in a position to lift the AIPZ and reduce all mandatory restrictions placed on bird keepers. I’m sure this will be welcome news for the sector which contributes greatly to our economy and wider society.

“Although all mandatory restrictions have now been lifted, the biosecurity requirements set out for the AIPZ should still be considered good practice. We are urging all bird keepers, whether they have a few birds or thousands, to adhere to the guidance as much as is practically possible.

“I would also encourage all poultry and captive bird keepers to remain vigilant for any signs of disease in their birds and seek immediate advice from their vet if they have any concerns.”

All poultry and bird gatherings will be permitted from 02 June provided organisers comply with the provisions of General Licence available on the DAERA website.

Bird keepers can help prevent avian flu, and other diseases, by maintaining high levels of biosecurity on their premises. Guidance on biosecurity measures you can take to prevent your birds from becoming sick.

Notes to editors: 

  1. All poultry and other birds must be registered with DAERA. The application form is available from the DAERA website.
  2. Bird keepers can receive updates on AI outbreaks and latest news by subscribing to DAERA text alert service. You will receive immediate notification of any disease outbreak or other important disease information, enabling you to protect your flock at the earliest opportunity. Simply text “BIRDS” to 67300.
  3. Members of the public are encouraged to report dead waterfowl (swans, geese or ducks) or gulls, or five or more dead wild birds of other species in the same location, to the DAERA helpline on 0300 200 7840, Mon-Fri 9:00am to 5:00pm).
  4. Follow DAERA on Twitter at and Facebook.
  5. All media queries should be directed to the DAERA Press Office: pressoffice.group@daera-ni.gov.uk
  6. The Executive Information Service operates an out of hours’ service for media enquiries only between 1800hrs and 0800hrs Monday to Friday and at weekends and public holidays. The duty press officer can be contacted on 028 9037 8110.

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