Moving pigs & Keeping records

Aside from registering your land and your herd, there are legal requirements relating to the movement of pigs. Remember this includes 1 pet pig or a group of farmed pigs. If you want to take a pig for a walk off your land, say down the street or around the local park, you need a special Walking Licence. This can be obtained by contacting the Animal and Plants Health Authority (or Scots/Welsh - for NI please check as there is nothing online about a WL) with your proposed walking route. They can turn down your application if they believe there is a risk of spreading disease. If approved, you can only walk that route and, you must carry the licence with you when you do so, and you have to re-apply each year. Let's face it, it's much simpler just to have plenty of space on your land for you and piggy to walk there. Plus you won't have to worry about the risk of strange dogs attacking your pig!

 

If you need to move a pig to a temporary or new permanent home, you need to get a General Movement Licence. The easiest and quickest way to do this is online, details are on the govt.uk website here (except for Northern Ireland, see below). This also acts as your holding register, otherwise you have to keep paper/computer records updated annually. You need your CPH and Herdmark Numbers for the licence. The pig must also have an Identifier - eartag or slapmark - again details are all on the govt.uk website. Once the pig is on the new land, there are Standstill Restrictions which means that no pig can be moved off the land for 20 days thereafter and other 'livestock' for 6 days. Rules and processes can vary between England, Scotland,  Wales, so it is always best to check the relevant links on the govt.uk website. For Northern Ireland, the process and requirements are somewhat different, for example there is no online system, so you must check the NI govt website if you are located there.

It is also important to remember that you are legally required to keep a record of any pig moves on or off your land. If you use the electronic system for movements on to and off your land - eAML2 - this will automatically provide a record for you for any movement-related changes. Otherwise you will need to set up a record yourself, paper or electronic, which you must make available for inspection when asked. The records must be kept for 3 years after you no longer have pigs. More details on what is required here:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/pig-keepers-report-and-record-movements-to-or-from-your-holding

I know this probably sounds like a lot of hassle if you just have one or two 'pet' pigs. Remember in the eyes of the law, even one pig dozing on your sofa poses a health risk, and the above rules are intended to contain and manage a disease outbreak should one occur.

© 2019 Pigs in the Wood