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The Welfare of Animals at the Time of Killing (Wales) Regulations 2014

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PART 5Stunning and killing operations

General requirements

23.—(1) The business operator and any person engaged in the stunning or killing of an animal must ensure that any instrument, restraining equipment, installation or other equipment which is used for stunning or killing is used in such a way as to facilitate rapid and effective stunning or killing.

(2) In the case of simple stunning, no person may stun an animal unless it is possible to kill it without delay.

Penetrative captive bolts

24.—(1) No person may use a penetrative captive bolt device to stun an animal unless—

(a)subject to sub-paragraph (3), the device is positioned and applied so as to ensure that the bolt enters the cerebral cortex; and

(b)the correct strength of cartridge or other propellant is used, in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions, to produce an effective stun.

(2) No person may shoot a bovine animal in the back of the head.

(3) No person may shoot a sheep or goat in the back of the head, unless the presence of horns prevents use of the top or the front of the head, in which case it may be shot in the back of the head provided that—

(a)the shot is placed immediately behind the base of the horns and aimed towards the mouth; and

(b)bleeding is commenced within 15 seconds of shooting or the sheep or goat is killed by another procedure within 15 seconds of shooting.

(4) A person who uses a captive bolt device must check that the bolt is retracted to its full extent after each shot and if it is not so retracted must ensure that the device is not used again until it has been repaired.

Non-penetrative captive bolts

25.  No person may stun an animal using a non-penetrative captive bolt except by an instrument which is applied in the proper position and which is used with the correct strength of cartridge or other propellant in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions to produce an effective stun.

Percussive blow to the head

26.—(1) No person may stun an animal using a non-mechanical percussive blow to the head.

(2) But the prohibition in sub-paragraph (1) does not apply to rabbits, provided that the operation is carried out in such a way that the rabbit is immediately rendered unconscious and remains so until it is dead.

Electrical stunning other than by waterbath

27.  No person may use electrodes to stun an animal unless—

(a)appropriate measures are taken to ensure that there is good electrical contact; and

(b)the strength and duration of the current used is such that the animal is immediately rendered unconscious and remains so until it is dead.

Electrical stunning by waterbath

28.  No person may use a waterbath stunner to stun poultry unless—

(a)the level of the water in the waterbath has been adjusted in order to ensure that there is good contact with each bird’s head;

(b)the strength and duration of the current used is such that the poultry are immediately rendered unconscious and remain so until dead;

(c)where poultry are stunned in groups in a waterbath, a voltage sufficient to produce a current strong enough to ensure that every bird is stunned is maintained;

(d)appropriate measures are taken to ensure that the current passes efficiently, in particular that there are good electrical contacts;

(e)the waterbath stunner is adequate in size and depth for the type of poultry being stunned; and

(f)a person is available to ascertain whether the waterbath stunner has been effective in stunning the poultry and, if it has not been effective, will either stun or kill the poultry without delay.

Exposure to gas – pigs

29.—(1) No person may stun pigs by exposure to gas unless each pig is exposed to the gas for long enough to ensure it is killed.

(2) The business operator and any person engaged in the stunning of pigs by exposure to gas must ensure that—

(a)the gas stunner, including any equipment used for conveying a pig through the gas mixture, is designed, constructed and maintained so as to—

(i)avoid compression of the chest of a pig;

(ii)enable a pig to remain upright until it loses consciousness; and

(iii)enable a pig to see other pigs as it is conveyed in the gas stunner;

(b)adequate lighting is provided in the gas stunner and the conveying mechanism to allow pigs to see other pigs or their surroundings;

(c)the gas stunner is equipped to maintain the gas concentration, as appropriate, in the gas stunner (in accordance with Table 3 of Chapter I of Annex I);

(d)there is a means of visually monitoring pigs which are in the gas stunner;

(e)there is a means of flushing the gas stunner with atmospheric air with the minimum of delay;

(f)there is a means of access to any pig with the minimum of delay; and

(g)no pig is passed through or allowed to remain in the gas stunner at any time when the visible and audible warning signals have been activated or when there is any defect in the operation of the gas stunner.

(3) The business operator and any person engaged in the stunning of pigs by direct exposure to gas mixture 1 (“carbon dioxide at high concentration”) in Table 3 of Chapter I of Annex I must ensure that—

(a)no pig enters the gas stunner if the displayed concentration by volume of carbon dioxide in the gas mixture falls below 80%; and

(b)once a pig enters the gas stunner it is conveyed to the point in the gas stunner of maximum concentration of the gas mixture within a maximum period of 30 seconds.

Exposure to gas – poultry

30.—(1) No person may stun poultry by exposure to gas unless each bird is exposed to the gas for long enough to ensure it is killed.

(2) No person may stun poultry by exposure to—

(a)gas mixture 3 (“carbon dioxide associated with inert gases”) in Table 3 of Chapter I of Annex I unless the carbon dioxide concentration is 30% by volume or less and the oxygen concentration is 2% by volume or less; or

(b)gas mixture 4 (“inert gases”) in Table 3 of Chapter I of Annex I unless the oxygen concentration is 2% by volume or less.

(3) The business operator and any person engaged in the stunning of poultry by exposure to gas must ensure that—

(a)the gas stunner is equipped to maintain the gas concentration, as appropriate, in the gas stunner (in accordance with Table 3 of Chapter I of Annex I and this Schedule);

(b)there is a means of visually monitoring poultry which are in the gas stunner;

(c)there is a means of flushing the gas stunner with atmospheric air with the minimum of delay;

(d)there is a means of access to any poultry with the minimum of delay;

(e)no poultry are passed through or allowed to remain in the gas stunner at any time when the visible and audible warning signals have been activated or when there is any defect in the operation of the gas stunner; and

(f)no poultry are shackled before they are dead.

(4) The business operator and any person engaged in the stunning of poultry by exposure to gas mixture 3 (“carbon dioxide associated with inert gases”) or gas mixture 4 (“inert gases”) in Table 3 of Chapter I of Annex I must ensure that no bird enters the gas stunner if, as appropriate—

(a)the displayed concentration of oxygen is above 2% by volume, except that the concentration of oxygen may occasionally rise to a concentration of not more than 5% by volume for not more than 30 seconds; or

(b)the displayed concentration of carbon dioxide is above 30% by volume.

Bleeding or pithing

31.—(1) A person engaged in the bleeding or pithing of an animal which has been simple stunned must ensure that the animal is bled or pithed without delay after it has been simple stunned.

(2) A person engaged in the bleeding of an animal which has been simple stunned must ensure that the bleeding is—

(a)rapid, profuse and complete; and

(b)completed before the animal regains consciousness.

(3) Without prejudice to the generality of paragraph 3.2 of Annex III, if an animal is bled after simple stunning, no person may cause or permit any further dressing procedure or any electrical stimulation to be performed on the animal before the bleeding has ended and in any event not before the expiry of—

(a)in the case of a turkey or goose, a period of not less than 2 minutes;

(b)in the case of any other bird, a period of not less than 90 seconds;

(c)in the case of bovine animals, a period of not less than 30 seconds; or

(d)in the case of sheep, goats, pigs and deer, a period of not less than 20 seconds.

(4) Sub-paragraph (3) does not apply to an animal which has been pithed.

Horses

32.  No person may kill a horse—

(a)except in a room or bay which has been provided for the killing of horses in accordance with paragraph 9(a);

(b)in a room or bay in which there are the remains of a horse or other animal; or

(c)within sight of any other horse.

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