Publication - Advice and guidance

Avian influenza (bird flu): how to spot and report the disease

Published: 13 Feb 2021
Last updated: 18 Feb 2021 - see all updates

Advice on what to do if you suspect there is an outbreak of avian influenza.

Avian influenza (bird flu): how to spot and report the disease
Licencing for Protection and Surveillance Zones

Licencing for Protection and Surveillance Zones

Where avian influenza is confirmed or suspected, we put in place restrictions on movements of birds in the area around the infected premises.

Check if you are in a disease control zone on our interactive map.

Poultry keepers can apply for licences for some low risk movements from any Protection Zone or Surveillance Zones currently in force.

General licences

General licences allow a movement or activity that would otherwise be prohibited. You need to check that you meet and comply with the conditions of the general licence. If you do so, you do not need to apply - you can rely on the general licence as providing authority for the movement or activity.

The following general licence is available:

  • general licence for the movement of mammals within, into or out of the Protection Zone and from or to premises in the Surveillance Zone where poultry or other captive birds are kept (EXD247(HPAI)(S))

Specific licences

If you need to move something that is restricted in a Protection Zone or Surveillance Zone you should apply to the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA). Complete the Application requesting exemption from restrictions (EXD100) form and email to

You should give the licensing team as much notice as possible to process the requests and aim to allow at least 3 days for your licence application to be processed. Complex and high-risk movements will require extra time to assess and process. We will endeavour to clear urgent applications with less than 3 days’ notice but you should make contingency plans in case this is not possible.

If a licence is issued, it will normally allow a one-off movement and will be subject to certain conditions based on disease control risk.



Animal Health and Welfare 
Scottish Government
Agriculture and Rural Economy Directorate
Saughton House

First published: 13 Feb 2021 Last updated: 18 Feb 2021 -