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Thousands of seabirds die around UK from ‘highly pathogenic’ bird flu

Deadly strain of avian influenza, originating from farmed poultry, killing terns, skuas, gannets and guillemots from Scotland down to East Anglia

Harry Cockburn
Environment Correspondent
Friday 10 June 2022 14:06 BST
Thousands of seabirds dying from avian flu

Seabirds around the UK are dying in their thousands due to the impact of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) on wild birds, sparking “huge concern” for vulnerable species.

The RSPB has described the deaths of great skuas, gannets, guillemots and terns as a “wake up call” for the Scottish government, which it says must “urgently” develop an action plan to protect wild birds.

The mass deaths come after HPAI, which originated in farmed poultry, hit barnacle geese wintering in the Solway Firth last year, reducing the Svalbard colony population by a third.

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