Bird flu cases increase across Cornwall amid concerns of growing outbreak

Dead birds have also been found on the Isles of Scilly. Credit: Isles of Scilly Wildlife Trust

There have been further confirmed cases of bird flu across Cornwall, with Mousehole Bird Hospital saying all of its birds would have to be culled after some had tested positive.

The government confirmed there had been an outbreak in Cornwall yesterday, urging people to avoid touching any sick or dead birds in the region.

The Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA) also said that a 'captive bird controlled zone' was in force around a different site in Newlyn after the discovery.

The authority confirmed that the birds with avian influenza, also known as 'bird flu', will be humanely culled.

The Friends of Portheras Cove posted on social media: "We are very sad to say that DEFRA confirmed last night that samples taken from the Mousehole Bird Hospital have tested positive for avian influenza H5N1 (‘Bird flu’).

"The hospital is now closed and tragically all birds there will have to be culled (by DEFRA). Additionally there have been reports of dead and ill gannets on the Isles of Scilly and here in West Cornwall.

"Although the risk to humans is low, we can inadvertently spread the disease to other birds, and there have been cases reported in dogs, too.

"Our local wildlife volunteers are monitoring and reporting sightings, but with limited resources and a large area to cover we do appreciate everyone's help in identifying potential cases.

"We would urge anyone finding dead or injured birds in this area to report any directly to Defra’s national helpline on 03459 335577."

Meanwhile, a number of wild birds have been found dead in the Isles of Scilly after it's believed they contracted avian flu.

The birds, which were mostly gannets and gulls, were reported to the Isles of Scilly Wildlife Trust and the Department of Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) and the Council of the Isles of Scilly yesterday (19 August).

Experts are trying to determine the cause of death, however a council spokesperson says it "may be the result of avian flu".

The Isles of Scilly Wildlife Trust has since urged people to not touch dead or sick birds and to report any deaths to Defra.

People are being urged to report any dead birds to Defra's national helpline on 03459 335577 or via the Council on