Also in the news / Bird flu update, New Shetlander and more…

THE SCOTTISH Government has published a new plan on how to deal with bird flu outbreaks.

Environment minister Gillian Martin has also thanked organisations and the public for their response to the ongoing outbreak.

Martin said: “The avian flu outbreak in wild bird populations across the globe is extremely sad and has been difficult for us all to witness.

“In most cases there is no alternative but to let the disease run its course, however the effectiveness of our multi-agency response in monitoring the spread of the virus can build our understanding of the outbreak and what mitigation measures might be helpful. The publication of this Plan is designed to support this.

“Our understanding of the outbreak in wild birds is also important in helping us to minimise the impact on kept birds and poultry, who we cannot forget have also been significantly affected by this virus.

“I want to take this opportunity to thank people across a variety of different government agencies, organisations, charities, local councils and the general public who have been working tirelessly over the last couple of years to respond to this unprecedented avian flu outbreak.”


THE SIMMER edition of local magazine the New Shetlander is out now.

This issue of the long-running literary publication features everything from sport and broadcasting to eco-anxiety and murders.

Mark Ryan Smith writes about the football links between Shetland, Orkney and Faroe, and Mary Blance has interviewed broadcaster Claire White.

There are also four short stories and a variety of poems in English and Shaetlan.

It is available to purchase from various local shops.

WORKERS at Scottish Water will be consulted about strike action next week after their employer issued a new pay structure and offered a below-inflation pay rise, the union UNISON has said.

The union says it is “unacceptable for a pay offer to be made and a new pay structure created without negotiation”.

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UNISON says the increase amounts to another real-terms pay cut, while the proposed changes will increase managers’ wages by up to £10,000 and reduce earnings for low-paid staff by £5,000.

STUDENTS at the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI) have rated their study experience highly in a UK-wide survey.

UHI received a score of 81 per cent for overall student satisfaction in the 2023 National Student Survey, four percentage points higher than the Scottish sector average of 77 per cent.

The results place UHI sixth in Scotland for student satisfaction, above twelve other universities across Scotland.

A ‘JIGS and jazz’ event is taking place in the Haroldswick longhouse in Unst tonight (Saturday).

There will be two harps and fiddle, including guest harpist from the Pacific Northwest, Laura Zaerr.

The event kicks off at 7.30pm, with entry priced at £5 – while mulled wine is also on offer.

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