Dear farm friends,

With sadness, we must share with you today (Tuesday 25th January) the news that our birds have been infected with avian flu and that Ouseburn Farm will therefore be closed until further notice. This was confirmed by the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) who visited the farm on Sunday to perform tests after staff became concerned about the health of the flock.

An Avian Influenza Prevention Zone came into force across the country in November last year and there have been 70 cases so far around the country. Ouseburn Farm followed  precautions to protect our flock, keeping our birds indoors and following strict biosecurity measures.

Unfortunately, no measures offer 100% protection and our location next to the Ouseburn River presented an increased risk, with the movement of wild birds and mammals that carry the disease, the suspected source of infection.

We are now working closely with DEFRA to follow government advice for infected premises, and will open again to you all as soon as we can.

The UK Health Security Agency has reassured the public that avian influenza is primarily a disease of birds and the risk to the general public’s health is very low. Similarly, the Food Standards Agency has said avian influenza poses a very low food safety risk for UK consumers. If you’d like more information, please visit the NHS and FSA websites.

For more information on how avian flu affects birds and advice for those who keep them, please visit If you have visited the farm recently and keep birds at home, then we strongly recommend you read this information and contact DEFRA with any questions or queries. Defra Rural Services Helpline can be reached on 03000 200 301 and you must ring this number if you suspect any birds may have the disease. Ouseburn Farm's case will be recorded on DEFRA’s website shortly, alongside specific guidance for anyone who keeps birds within the area.

Thank you for your support and understanding as we navigate through this difficult time.

With best wishes

The Ouseburn Farm Team

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