AI still affecting Black-headed Gulls

Although wild bird cases of bird flu are starting to diminish, large groups of Black-headed Gulls continue to see mass die-offs. This latest one in Bedford is a timely reminder that we still need to take utmost care with our biosecurity. See local BBC New report here: For the latest info about hygiene […]

Pal-Mates … weekend web tip

a pair of Maned Ducks grazing at the waterside

What’s in a name — Maned Duck or Maned Goose? Life is a gradient of relatedness and what taxonomy tries to do is put it in that order. When the common names were thought up for waterfowl they were either called a duck or a goose according to how we traditionally recognised each — ‘ducks’ […]

Housing measures now apply to Northern Ireland and from Friday also to Wales

The requirement to house our birds was announced for Northern Ireland today. On Friday 2nd December it will also apply to Wales. The details of these housing orders are broadly similar to those in force in England. Full specific details can be found for each administration: The ability to keep waterfowl under […]

Pal-Mates … weekend web tip

Breed Type in White birds. Breed Type is a term used in exhibition birds to describe the general shape or form of the bird that typifies the breed. Most points (out of 100) are awarded for the different components that characterise Breed Type. On the show circuit, white birds are definitely more popular than other […]

Pal-Mates … weekend web tip

Netting of enclosures — the times they are a-changing an old song goes… Bird flu isn’t a myth or a conspiracy. The way we keep our birds is going to evolve and netting a waterfowl collection is worth serious thought. Pros • Prevents predation of birds and eggs • Reduces food bill • Reduces disease […]

Pal-Mates … weekend web tip

Photographing a duck with an iPad

New bird flu cases are coming up most days. Is there anything that can save your birds if you are infected? Most of East Anglia is subject to a poultry (this includes waterfowl) housing order now, but it is quite likely that other areas will be added if there are more clusters of outbreaks. For […]

Avian Influenza vaccine

We do get asked about vaccines for bird flu; the Head of Virology for APHA was on Farming Today yesterday. You can listen to the broadcast on BBC Sounds. We asked APHA for comment, they are fully behind the content of this broadcast and confirmed that all research on vaccines is being monitored. It […]

Pal-Mates … weekend web tip

Clean water is really enjoyed by waterfowl. With continued high temperatures, here are tips to help waterfowl feel more comfortable:   • Watch your birds and see where they choose to be • Most waterfowl will cope fine as long as they have constant access to drinking water and shade • Swimming water is helpful […]

Pal-Mates …weekend web tip

Pal -Mates …weekend web tip Y s for Yellow Belly and Yap Yap Yap!. The colour genetics of the Yellow Belly Call are not fully investigated, but these delightful little birds are certainly handsome. Topsides, that is above the waterline, they strongly resemble the wild Mallard colour. The ducks do have rich pinkish buff on […]