Bird flu discovered at Bettws Hall Game Farm in Wales

Posted on the 11th May 2023

There has been an outbreak of bird flu at the largest game farm in the UK – Bettws Hall in Powys – just days after the mandatory housing measures were lifted. Many birds will have been killed, and new restrictions (Protection and Surveillance Zones) will be in place – although we can assume they will be lifted in due course.

Bettws Hall has been investigated by Animal Aid numerous times in the past twenty years. The farm holds thousands of ‘breeding’ game birds in oppressive metal battery cages, which are exposed to the elements and cause the birds so much stress that they attack one another. The birds’ eggs are taken from them, incubated, hatched – and the resulting chicks are reared for shooters to kill later in the year.

Animal Aid has been calling on the Welsh Government to ban the breeding and release of game birds for fear of an increased risk of bird flu transmission to wild birds. We also wrote to the authorities in Wales and England asking that the ‘catching-up’ of game birds (who are then used as breeding stock) should not take place at the end of the 2022-2023 shooting season over concerns that infected birds would be taken back to game farms. Sadly, and despite the risk to millions of wild birds, it seems that the authorities are content to allow the shooting industry to continue breeding, releasing and shooting birds.


Read more posts...

Live Exports Ban: Does it go far enough?

Yesterday, we shared the news that the Animal Welfare (Livestock Exports) Bill has passed its final stage in Parliament and will soon be enshrined into law. But does it go far enough?

Posted 15 May 2024

Breaking: Britain’s historic ban on live exports

We’re delighted to share the news that the Animal Welfare (Livestock Exports) Bill has passed its final stage in Parliament, delivering on the government’s longstanding commitment to ending the export of animals for slaughter and...

Posted 14 May 2024