Information

Welfare of meat chickens and meat breeding chickens: guidance

Detailed information about the needs of meat chickens and meat breeding chickens and how to meet these needs in accordance with good practice.


Annex 5: Permitted Procedures

The mutilation of chickens is banned under the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006 unless the procedure is an exempt procedure.  The Prohibited Procedures on Protected Animals (Exemptions) (Scotland) Regulations 2010 (as amended) exempt certain procedures from this ban, provided that they are carried out:

  • for a purpose which is specified, in relation to any such procedure, in column 2 of the corresponding entry in the relevant schedule;
  • in accordance with the relevant requirements in the Schedules; 
  • in such a way as to minimise the pain and suffering it causes to the animal;
  • in hygienic conditions; and
  • in accordance with good practice.

The permitted procedures for meat chickens and breeding chickens are listed below.  The lists are correct at the point of publication. 

Procedure Purpose

Micro-chipping

Identification

Beak Trimming

Conditions:

1) Beak trimming of poultry may only be performed to prevent feather pecking and cannibalism and, in relation to laying hens kept on holdings of 350 or more and meat chickens kept on holdings of 500 or more, when the animals are less than 10 days old.

4) Beak trimming of meat chickens may only be carried out, after consultation with and on the advice of a veterinary surgeon, by qualified staff, and where other measures to prevent feather pecking and cannibalism are exhausted.

Flock welfare

Laparoscopy General animal management
Wing tagging Identification, in connection with breeding or testing for the presence of disease.
Web tagging Identification, in connection with breeding or testing for the presence of disease.

Contact

Email: Kirsten.Foubister@gov.scot

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