WINDSOR and Eton businesses have been told to stop selling bird food after an outbreak of bird flu in the area.

A number of swans have been culled after falling ill with the disease with a number of measures now being put in place to halt the spread.

A 3km exclusion zone has been placed around Eton, banning residents from feeding the birds.

Meanwhile, dog walkers have been ordered to keep their pets on a leash when walking along the Windsor and Eton riverside.

It comes after a dead swan was found in Eton on January 2. Last week, Swan Lifeline, which cares for sick and injured swans, had to put down 26 of its birds due to the outbreak.

READ MORE: Swans put to sleep after bird flu outbreak near Windsor

Councillors and residents sitting on the Windsor town forum were given an update on the situation by town manager Paul Roach on Thursday, January 13.

The meeting heard the exclusion zone could last up to three weeks. However, it could restart for another 21 days if another dead infected bird is discovered.

Mr Roach said the trading standards team is leading on the response to the outbreak and have been contacting rescue centres and birdkeepers.

He also said he has been in talking with businesses to cease all bird food sales while this issue is ongoing.

READ MORE: Windsor and Eton bird flu cases spark safety measures in area

Mr Roach said: “The primary aim is to try and prevent birds from flocking together. I know what everybody is thinking, how do you keep swans from socially distancing?

“There is no answer to that but that’s what we’re trying to make sure we’re not encouraging them to come together.”

People should not touch dead or sick wild birds.

If anyone finds a dead swan, geese or ducks, or other dead wild birds, such as gulls or birds of prey, contact DEFRA on 03459 33 55 77.