On high alert

Country Smallholding - - Inside This Month -

POUL­TRY KEEP­ERS in the UK are be­ing urged to be vig­i­lant be­cause New­cas­tle Disease is getting too close for com­fort. Jour­nal­ist Char­lotte Cooper looks at the re­al­ity of this deadly res­pi­ra­tory virus for Poul­try (page 5) and how much havoc it has al­ready wreaked in Europe. In Bel­gium, poul­try shows have been can­celled and birds be­long­ing to hobby keep­ers are in ‘lock down’. One woman, Els De Saveur, who runs an an­i­mal sanc­tu­ary in East Flan­ders, has not been able to re­spond to calls to res­cue birds. The sit­u­a­tion is pretty dire, so Bri­tish own­ers can only wait and hope that it doesn’t cross the Chan­nel. And on a fur­ther some­what gloomy note, the Bri­tish Water­fowl As­so­ci­a­tion has ad­vice on suc­ces­sion plan­ning. While none of us want to con­tem­plate the un­think­able, whether we own ducks, geese or chick­ens, it is al­ways a good idea to plan for their fu­ture and work out who might take them on. Never put off un­til to­mor­row what you can do to­day...

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