More sadness for the Queen as Windsor Castle is struck with bird flu outbreak

Queen Elizabeth II prepares to greet Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev at Buckingham Palace on November 4, 2015 in London, England.
(Image credit: Getty Images / Chris Jackson - WPA Pool)

The Queen has been hit with yet another emotional blow, as vets have been forced to cull over 20 Windsor swans infected with bird flu.

After 2021 was described as the ‘worst year ever’ for the Queen (opens in new tab), after the loss of her husband of 73 years (opens in new tab), Prince Philip (opens in new tab), Her Majesty has been hit with yet another blow.

The Queen has already begun  2022 in mourning (opens in new tab), after the loss of a close friend and now the monarch faces further worry as bird flu has broken out amongst her beloved Windsor swans.

The Queen’s swans at Windsor Castle have been struck by a bird flu outbreak, with vets having to put down 26 swans. This was sadly necessary to stop the spread of the illness which is highly infectious and deadly for birds.

A swan swims in sight of Windsor Castle where the river Thames has burst it's banks in an area known as The Brocas on February 10, 2014 in Eton, England. The Environment Agency has issued severe flood warnings for a number of areas on the river Thames west of Londonvvv

According to The Sun (opens in new tab), six dead swans were pulled from the Windsor Castle waters earlier this month, with the amounts of swans that have died as a result of the disease now at 33. It’s estimated that between 150 and 200 swans could still be at risk in the area.

The Queen’s Swan Marker, David Barber, has reportedly informed her and says she is very ‘saddened' by the news. The Queen owns all unmarked in England and is known for her love of animals, so she will be very concerned over the potential spread and loss of further swans.

Queen Elizabeth II arrives to greet the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al Thani to her Windsor residence on October 26, 2010 in Windsor, England.

Wendy Hernon, of Swan Support rescue centre, also told The Sun, "It is a nightmare and could end up a disaster. I know the Queen always shows great concern for her flock of swans."

The Queen has made Windsor castle her main residence last year, after leaving Buckingham palace following a difficult year, of loss and suffering a painful back injury and overnight stay in hospital (opens in new tab).