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General Health Controls

Movement Restrictions

The current animal movement restrictions under the Disease Control (Interim Measures) ( Scotland ) Order 2002 were introduced on 18 February 2002. This legislation, which can be viewed below, provides that animals may only move under licence and imposes standstill periods when animals are brought onto holdings.

At present this standstill period is 13 days for cattle, sheep and goats, while for pigs a 20-day standstill is required under the Pig (Records, Identification and Movement) Order 1995. Although introduced as a direct result of the 2001 Foot and Mouth Disease outbreak, these movement restrictions will also help to control the spread of other potential outbreaks of contagious diseases.

General Licence

In accordance with article 3(1)(a) of the Disease Control (Interim Measures) (Scotland) Order 2002 (as amended) the movement within Scotland of cattle, sheep, goats and other ruminating animals (except camelids) and pigs is permitted under the terms and conditions of a General Licence. Conditions cover issues such as identification and movement record keeping and the notification of animals movements as appropriate.

Movement restrictions on cattle born or reared in the UK before August 1996

All cattle born or reared in the UK before 1 August 1996 are subject to movement restrictions as an extra precaution against meat from these older cattle entering the food chain (milk from such animals can be sold for human consumption). Further iInformation is available on movement restrictions on cattle born or reared in the UK before August 1996 on the Animal & Plant Health Agency (APHA) website.

Cattle born or reared in the UK before 1 August 1996 are permanently excluded from the food chain and it is illegal to send them for slaughter for human consumption. At the end of their productive lives, they must be treated in the same way as fallen cattle.


Livestock Movements Digest

The Livestock Movements Digest is a brief, at-a-glance guide to the animal movement regimes in Scotland compared with those in England. More in-depth information can be obtained by contacting Scottish Government Rural Directorate (for Scottish matters) or DEFRA (for English matters). For contact details, please see the Useful Contacts page.

Exemptions to Standstill Rules

A number of exemptions are permitted to the standstill rules. These include the movement of animals going direct to a slaughterhouse the movement of breeding animals; young lambs going for fostering; and young calves moving for fostering or to calf rearing premises. Other exemptions are in place for show/exhibition animals; and for movements where animals are held in authorised separation facilities.


The following Legislation covers the animal disease control movements.

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