Measures across the UK to reduce the risk of Avian Influenza have been lifted across most of the country, the UK chief veterinary officer has confirmed.
The restrictions will remain in place in targeted areas of Lancashire, Cumbria and Merseyside, due to a heightened risk in these areas.
The latest risk assessment published by Defra finds overall risk across England has not increased, but there is a heightened risk in some areas.
To minimise the risk of disease spreading in these areas, a new, targeted Avian Influenza prevention zone will be introduced covering the districts.
This will replace the nation-wide system that was previously in place.
The new, localised zones will require keepers to continue to observe existing mandatory disease prevention measures such as minimising movement in and out of bird enclosures, cleaning footwear, keeping areas where birds live clean and tidy and feeding birds indoors.
Poultry gatherings in the localised areas will continue to be banned, and keepers from the area are not able to take their poultry to gatherings elsewhere.
However, outside these areas the ban on poultry gatherings has been lifted.
A prevention zone requiring keepers to observe strict disease prevention measures and a ban on poultry gatherings was in place across England since December 2016.
From May 15 keepers across most of England were no longer required by law to follow these measures.
They should continue to follow industry standard best practice on biosecurity, including minimising movement in and out of bird enclosures, cleaning footwear, keeping areas where birds live clean and tidy and feeding birds indoors.
Poultry gatherings can resume in all areas outside the remaining prevention zones, but poultry from the affected districts of Lancashire, Cumbria and Merseyside will not be able to attend.