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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-05734: Tavish Scott (Shetland Islands)

Scottish Liberal Democrats

Date lodged: 19 December 2016

To ask the Scottish Government whether it will consider an exemption to the Avian Influenza Prevention Zone for smaller farmers and crofters with smaller numbers of birds.

Answered by: Fergus Ewing 13 January 2017

We would encourage smaller farmers and crofters to speak with their private vets, or their local Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) office, if they have any specific questions about complying with these requirements.

As laid out by the declaration of 6 December 2016 and the declaration of 6 January 2017, all poultry and captive bird keepers in Scotland are required to keep their birds indoors or, as this may not be practical for some smaller scale keepers, they should take appropriate steps to keep them separate from wild birds and apply heightened biosecurity measures.

Smaller-scale farmers' and crofters' flocks are subject to the same risk from Avian Influenza circulating in wild birds as the larger, commercial flocks, therefore any exemption for certain keepers to the Avian Influenza Prevention Zone may reduce its effectiveness.