Pheasant male bird standing on a hill

The Countryside Alliance is pleased to note that Defra-funded research into the use of raised laying units, published today (24 July), supports the existing Defra Code for the Welfare of Gamebirds Reared for Sporting Purposes, used by the British gamebird industry.

The research defrashows that the current Code of Welfare of Gamebirds Reared for Sporting Purposes, as was proposed by the working group set up by Defra, is fit for purpose. 

Adrian Blackmore, director of shooting for the Countryside Alliance, said: “The welfare of gamebirds is of paramount importance and any decisions taken regarding animal welfare should be based on sound science. We are pleased that this rigorous research approves current best practice for British game bird egg production, and shows that birds in raised laying units can meet animal welfare standards when undertaken properly.

“We shall closely review the results of this research and welcome the further research that is to be undertaken.”