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Canada’s food safety watchdog says it has confirmed cases of high pathogenic Avian Influenza at an exhibition farm in Newfoundland and Labrador.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says in a release Wednesday that the farm on the Avalon Peninsula does not produce birds for sale.

The agency says as the birds infected with H5N1 were located on an exhibition farm, and no other cases have been reported in the vicinity, Canada’s status as ‘free from Avian Influenza’ remains in place.

It says no trade restrictions are expected as a result of this detection and the outbreak has been reported to the World Organisation for Animal Health.

As a precaution, the agency says it has placed the farm under quarantine and established a 10 kilometre zone with movement control measures and enhanced biosecurity to limit the potential spread of the disease.

It says Avian Influenza circulates naturally in birds and recent detections in Europe indicate an even higher risk of the disease in North American poultry flocks this year.

“This makes it more important than ever for anyone raising poultry to remain vigilant against AI and ensure they have effective biosecurity measures in place,” the agency said Wednesday. “Biosecurity is a key tool for preventing the transmission of this disease to North American farm birds.”

The agency says Avian Influenza, often called “bird flu,” can affect several species of food-producing birds including chickens, turkeys, quails, and guinea fowl, as well as pet and wild birds.

Highly pathogenic avian influenza can cause severe illness and death in birds.

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