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Welfare of Farmed Animals Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2000

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1.  All cages shall comply with the following requirements—

(a)the cage area, measured in a horizontal plane, for each laying hen shall be not less than—

(i)1000 cm2 where one hen is kept in the cage;

(ii)750 cm2 where two hens are kept in the cage;

(iii)550 cm2 where three hens are kept in the cage, and

(iv)450 cm2 where four or more hens are kept in the cage;

(b)the minimum cage area for each laying hen shall be capable of being used without restriction and may include the area where the non-waste deflection plate (otherwise known as the egg guard) is placed so long as that area is capable of being so used;

(c)a feed trough of a length not less than 10 cm multiplied by the number of hens in the cage and capable of being used without restriction shall be provided;

(d)except where nipple drinkers and drinking cups are provided, the cage shall have a continuous drinking channel which shall be—

(i)not less than 10 cm multiplied by the number of hens in the cage; and

(ii)capable of being used without restriction;

(e)where drinking points are plumbed in, there shall be a minimum of two nipple drinkers or two drinking cups within reach of the cage;

(f)the height of the cage, for 65% of its area, shall be not less than 40 cm, and, for the remainder of the area, shall be not less than 35 cm (the height being obtained by a vertical line from the floor to the nearest point in the roof and the area being obtained by multiplying 450 cm2 by the number of hens kept in the cage);

(g)the floor of the cage shall be constructed so as to support adequately each of the forward facing claws of each foot; and

(h)the slope of the floor shall not exceed 14% or 8 degrees, when made of rectangular wire mesh, and 21.3% or 12 degrees for other types of floor.

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