Avian flu a ‘catastrophic threat’ to bird life in Shetland

Bird flu is on route to being “the most catastrophic threat to bird life”.

Nature-lover Brydon Thomason, who runs tour company Shetland Nature, says urgent action is needed to combat the epidemic which is continuing to grip Shetland’s seabird population.

“This is unquestionably already on route to being the most catastrophic threat to birdlife as we know it,” he said.

“All organisations/authorities who can, absolutely must prioritise action.”

Local RSPB manager Helen Moncrieff has said she “cried” after witnessing depleted bird numbers on Noss.

She described the experience as “both awesome and awful”.

“So many dead and dying birds because of bird flu,” she said.

“I cried. Again. Yet another anthropogenic pressure on such magnificent birds that gift us joy.

“We owe them. We need to share their story and act.”

Concerns have already been raised that possibly thousands of birds have been killed by bird flu.

Nature Scot says the avian flu is continuing to affect wild bird populations across the country.

Anyone who sees a dead, wild bird is advised not to touch it, but to contact Defra’s national GB helpline on 03459 33 55 77.


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