British Chicken Keeping Rules

Col1948

Songster
Sep 9, 2018
685
1,451
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Manchester UK
I just watched a video on YouTube and I never knew about a few of these rules.

Not sure how many UK members on here if any but something to be aware of, for one I didn't know it is illegal to feed kitchen scraps and dried meal-worms.
It doesn't take much a for nosy neighbour to report you to the authorities and you face a heavy fine for doing something you didn't know about.

I do know there are people in the UK who keep chickens on allotments, apparently it's ok for them to eat scraps that have been grown there.

Then having a compost heap, if you put kitchen scraps on the heap you can't let the chickens on it to rummage around, but ordinary compost for the garden is OK. I'm not sure how strict some of these rules are but obviously if you ever get caught knowing how they are in the UK you won't get much sympathy from the authorities.
 

Col1948

Songster
Sep 9, 2018
685
1,451
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Manchester UK
I phoned the farm shop where I bought my meal-worms from, I told the lady I'm new to keeping chickens and watched a YT clip saying it is illegal to feed meal-worms to chickens in the UK.
I told her I bought mine from her shop, she then said, "The meal-worms are for wild birds," so I asked why she had them with all the chicken feeds and other chicken stuff, I said if they are for wild birds they should be with the wild bird food.
Her reply was, "Yes meal-worms are for wild birds," I said I know that now but for anyone else who doesn't know they may pick them up thinking they are OK for chickens.
She then said, "Ah YouTube, take no notice of what's on there, it's not an official website, thanks for letting us know I'll check it out."

So she told me they were for wild birds but then said take no notice of what I had just seen on YT, then said thanks for letting us know and checking it out, so did she know or not?
 

chickengeorgeto

Crowing
7 Years
Dec 25, 2012
8,047
4,218
431
Big Bend of the Tennessee River's Right Bank.
There are many phony web sights out there like the one mentioned. Many of these sights are maintained by so-called-humane groups whose only concern is to raise cash off of concerned citizens and lacking that to make chicken keeping as expensive on the chicken keeper and as hard or deadly on the poor chicken as is possible.
 

Perris

Still learning
Jan 28, 2018
4,364
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Gower, Wales
As I understand it, the dried mealworms ban is an unintended consequence of poor drafting of some EU legislation on food traceability and the fact most come from farms in China where there is no reliable data on what they were fed. There was a petition to parliament to lift it some years ago but it didn't get enough signatures to go forward. Maybe someone will try again after Brexit because what scientific research has been done shows categorically that there are no risks from dried mealworms. Kitchen scraps falls under the same sort of food traceability legislation. I don't think you need to worry about either unless you are selling your eggs to the general public.
 

Col1948

Songster
Sep 9, 2018
685
1,451
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Manchester UK
Thanks Perris, no I'm not selling my eggs, I only have one hen laying at the moment and she is laying soft shell eggs, sometimes she breaks them getting off the nest lol, but that's another story.

I heard about the mealworms coming from China and additives in our food that could be passed on to the chickens viia scraps etc.
 

Col1948

Songster
Sep 9, 2018
685
1,451
217
Manchester UK
Thanks Perris, no I'm not selling my eggs, I only have one hen laying at the moment and she is laying soft shell eggs, sometimes she breaks them getting off the nest lol, but that's another story.

I heard about the mealworms coming from China and additives in our food that could be passed on to the chickens viia scraps etc.
 

Cyprus

Master of the 'never give up' attitude
Jan 19, 2018
16,113
55,603
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My Coop
My Coop
Hi :frow
I watch this guy every week. I am susbscribed.

He is actually a very good and attentive breeder and owner. Not an animal rights guy.

His county rules may be different than yours just like how in the states our rules differ between states and the counties within them.

Thanks,
Cyprus
 

skwarksy

Chirping
Sep 24, 2018
75
345
73
staffordshire England
hi,im from England Newcastle under lyme, just read thread about scrap feeding . ifeed mine with scraps from kitchen they wouldn't have many treats otherwise especially in winter! mealworms occasionaly too many make them fat .bowl of porridge in morning, their feed is in run all day mixed corn and wheat feed in afternoon .they are good layers ,I don't care what rules say my neighbours are the same we feed what we want !
 

Sneebsey

Songster
Apr 7, 2017
803
1,436
236
Shropshire, UK
From Defra:

"Dried terrestrial invertebrates (insects) and processed animal proteins (PAPs) of insect origin cannot be used in farm animal feed or in treats, eg hen treats."

"You must never use catering waste as farm animal feed, regardless of whether it’s vegetable or meat based or whether it comes from from restaurants, households, or other sites.

You must never use:
  • scraps and catering waste from any restaurant or commercial kitchen (including vegan kitchens)
  • kitchen waste from non-vegan households
  • raw meat and fish (including shellfish) or any ABPs containing them
  • fully or partially cooked meat, fish and shellfish or any ABPs containing them
  • any unprocessed egg and egg products, milk and milk products or any other unprocessed products of animal origin
  • collagen and gelatine from ruminants or any products containing it
  • unwanted food products, meant for humans, that are decomposing, mouldy, or toxic"
For treats, I feed a seed mix primarily comprised of black oil sunflower seeds with oats, maize and barley. I also give any whole soft fruit or safe whole vegetable that is not going to be eaten but that is not mouldy, including berries. This is iffy according to this legislation, but not explicitly banned.
 
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skwarksy

Chirping
Sep 24, 2018
75
345
73
staffordshire England
I have read those guidelines ,for treats I give them tomatoes,apples ,cucumber,etc i cant let them free range in winter because of bird flu restrictons so they need variety ,I hang most fruit and veg so they are occupied .I also buy 2 magazines ,practical poultry and your chickens ,they are good ,seeing as they are 5yrs old I must be doing something right !
 

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