January 5, 2022 11.12 am This story is over 26 months old

Footage shows thousands of culled Lincolnshire farm chickens amid bird flu outbreak

A sad sight for Lincolnshire farmers and animal activists alike

Poignant video footage and photographs show thousands of culled Lincolnshire farm chickens being dumped into a container amid the UK’s biggest ever outbreak of bird flu.

Images taken at the LJ Fairburn, Ivy House Farm in Alford in December lay bare the reality of the disease’s growing presence in Lincolnshire, and the threat is poses to local farming businesses.

The 14th Lincolnshire outbreak of bird flu has been confirmed on Wednesday, January 5 at North Somercotes in East Lindsey. A 3km and 10km Temporary Control Zone has been put in place around the premises.

| Photo: Open Cages

The first outbreak of the virus in the county was found on December 11, 2021. By New Year’s Eve there were 12 cases in Alford, Mabelthorpe, Louth and North Somercotes.

All birds exposed to Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) H5N1 must be humanely culled. About one million birds have been culled to stop the spread of bird flu in Lincolnshire, the BBC estimates – see the latest updates from DEFRA (Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs) here.

Images and video footage, taken on December 22, were shared with The Lincolnite by an animal welfare group called Open Cages – which is calling on the UK Government to ban factory farming.

| Photo: Open Cages

It claims the farming method is “ideal for spreading diseases like wildfire”.

Workers in full hazmat suits with wheelbarrows and machinery can been seen removing piles of animal carcasses into containers.

| Photo: Open Cages

| Photo: Open Cages

Open Cages CEO Connor Jackson said: “Across Britain, two million intelligent, sensitive, sentient individuals have been disposed of like numbers on a spreadsheet. It’s an absolutely horrendous sight.”

He went on to accuse the farming industries of giving little value to the lives of the animals by farming intensively.

“Bird flu was once a very rare disease among chickens, but today there are outbreaks occurring every year: this footage helps explain why.

“On a factory farm a virus can spread like wildfire and provide an ideal chance to mutate, especially in highly intensified poultry capitals like Lincolnshire, East Anglia and Herefordshire.”

LJ Fairburn has been contacted by The Lincolnite, but has not responded by the time of publication.