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Welfare of Farmed Animals Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2000

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Regulations 3(2), 3(3), 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9

SCHEDULE 1General conditions under which farmed animals must be kept

Staffing

1.  Animals shall be cared for by a sufficient number of staff who possess the appropriate ability, knowledge and professional competence.

Inspection

2.—(1) Subject to sub-paragraph (3), all animals kept in husbandry systems in which their welfare depends on frequent human attention shall be thoroughly inspected at least once a day to check that they are in a state of well-being.

(2) Subject to sub-paragraph (3), all animals kept in systems other than husbandry systems in which their welfare depends on frequent human attention shall be inspected at intervals sufficient to avoid any suffering.

(3) Notwithstanding sub-paragraphs (1) and (2), in the following cases, it shall be sufficient for the purposes of this paragraph to comply with the following specific provisions—

(a)in the case of laying hens kept in battery cages, paragraph 7 of Schedule 2;

(b)in the case of calves, paragraphs 3 and 4 of Schedule 4; and

(c)in the case of pigs, paragraph 2 of Schedule 6.

3.  Where animals are kept in a building adequate lighting (whether fixed or portable) shall be available to enable them to be thoroughly inspected at any time.

4.  Where any animals (other than poultry) are kept in a building they shall be kept on, or have access at all times to, a lying area which is well drained or well maintained with dry bedding.

5.  Any animals which appear to be ill or injured—

(a)shall be cared for appropriately without delay; and

(b)where they do not respond to such care, veterinary advice shall be obtained as soon as possible.

6.  Where necessary, sick or injured animals shall be isolated in suitable accommodation with, where appropriate, dry comfortable bedding.

Record keeping

7.  A record shall be maintained of—

(a)any medicinal treatment given to animals, and

(b)the number of mortalities found on each inspection of animals carried out in accordance with any of the following provisions—

(i)in the case of laying hens kept in battery cages, paragraph 7 of Schedule 2;

(ii)in the case of calves, paragraph 3 or 4 of Schedule 4;

(iii)in the case of pigs, paragraph 2 of Schedule 6; or

(iv)in any other case paragraph 2 of this Schedule.

8.  The record referred to in paragraph 7 shall be retained for a period of at least three years from the date on which the medical treatment was given, or the date of the inspection, as the case may be, and shall be made available to an authorised officer when carrying out an inspection or when otherwise requested by such person.

Freedom of movement

9.  The freedom of movement of animals, having regard to their species and in accordance with established experience and scientific knowledge, shall not be restricted in such a way as to cause them unnecessary suffering or injury.

10.  Where animals are continuously or regularly tethered or confined, they shall be given the space appropriate to their physiological and ethological needs in accordance with established experience and scientific knowledge.

Buildings and accommodation

11.  Materials used for the construction of accommodation, and, in particular for the construction of pens, cages, stalls and equipment with which the animals may come into contact, shall not be harmful to them and shall be capable of being thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.

12.  Accommodation and fittings for securing animals shall be constructed and maintained so that there are no sharp edges or protrusions likely to cause injury to them.

13.  Air circulation, dust levels, temperature, relative air humidity and gas concentrations shall be kept within limits which are not harmful to the animals.

14.  Animals kept in buildings shall not be kept in permanent darkness.

15.  Where the natural light available in a building is insufficient to meet the physiological and ethological needs of any animals being kept in it then appropriate artificial lighting shall be provided.

16.  Animals kept in buildings shall not be kept without an appropriate period of rest from artificial lighting.

Animals not kept in buildings

17.  Animals not kept in buildings shall, where necessary and possible, be given protection from adverse weather conditions, predators and risks to their health and shall, at all times, have access to a well drained lying area.

Automatic or mechanical equipment

18.  All automated or mechanical equipment essential for the health and well being of the animals shall be inspected at least once a day to check that there is no defect in it and that no parts of the equipment have become seriously worn.

19.  Where defects or worn parts in automated or mechanical equipment of the type specified in paragraph 18 are discovered, these shall be rectified immediately, or if this is impossible, appropriate steps shall be taken to safeguard the health and well-being of the animals pending the rectification of such defects including the use of alternative methods of feeding and watering and methods of providing and maintaining a satisfactory environment.

20.  Where the health and well-being of the animals is dependent on an artificial ventilation system—

(a)provision shall be made for an appropriate back-up system to guarantee sufficient air renewal to preserve the health and well-being of the animals in the event of failure of the system, and

(b)an alarm system (which will operate even if the principal electricity supply to it has failed) shall be provided to give warning of any failure of the system.

21.  The back-up system referred to in paragraph 20(a) shall be thoroughly inspected and the alarm system referred to in paragraph 20(b) shall each be tested at least once every seven days in order to check that there is no defect in the system, and, if any defect is found (whether when the system is inspected or tested in accordance with this paragraph or at any other time), it shall be rectified immediately.

Feed, water and other substances

22.  Animals shall be fed a wholesome diet which is appropriate to their age and species and which is fed to them in sufficient quantity to maintain them in good health, to satisfy their nutritional needs and promote a positive state of well-being.

23.  Animals shall not be provided with food or liquid in a manner, nor shall such food or liquid contain any substance, which may cause them unnecessary suffering or injury.

24.  All animals shall have access to feed at intervals appropriate to their physiological needs (and, in any case, at least once a day), except where a veterinary surgeon acting in the exercise of his profession otherwise directs.

25.  All animals shall have access to a suitable water supply and be provided with an adequate supply of fresh drinking water each day or be able to satisfy their fluid intake needs by other means.

26.  Feeding and watering equipment shall be designed, constructed, placed and maintained so that contamination of food and water and the harmful effects of competition between animals are minimised.

27.  No other substance, with the exception of those given for therapeutic or prophylactic purposes or for the purpose of zootechnical treatment shall be administered to animals unless it has been demonstrated by scientific studies of animal welfare or established experience that the effect of that substance is not detrimental to the health or welfare of the animals.

Breeding procedures

28.—(1) Subject to sub-paragraph (2), natural or artificial breeding or breeding procedures which cause, or are likely to cause, suffering or injury to any of the animals concerned shall not be practised.

(2) Sub-paragraph (1) shall not preclude the use of natural or artificial breeding procedures that are likely to cause minimal or momentary suffering or injury or that might necessitate interventions which would not cause lasting injury.

29.  Animals shall not be kept for farming purposes unless it can reasonably be expected, on the basis of their genotype or phenotype, that they can be kept without detrimental effect on their health or welfare.

Electrical immobilisation

30.  A person shall not apply an electrical current to any animals for the purposes of immobilisation.

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