Registering poultry

How to register birds with the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA): the rules, the information you need and details you must keep up to date.

The registration rules apply to poultry keepers. The keeper must complete the registration form and keep their flock’s registration details up to date.

You’re a keeper if you’re responsible for the day-to-day care of poultry. The keeper and the owner can be different people.

When you must register

You must register flocks of 50 or more birds. You must do this within one month of keeping this number of birds at your site. You’re breaking the law if you don’t follow these rules.

The law applies to birds you keep or breed for:

  • the consumption of meat and eggs (for personal or commercial use)
  • other commercial purposes
  • restocking game birds

It includes:

  • keeping 50 or more birds for only some months of the year, such as game birds
  • flocks made up of different species, such as chickens, ducks or geese (the 50 or more birds don’t have to be the same species)

Poultry birds include:

  • chickens
  • turkeys
  • ducks
  • geese
  • guinea fowl
  • quail
  • partridges
  • pheasants
  • pigeons

Register birds not covered by the rules

You can choose to register a flock with fewer than 50 birds or birds you keep for purposes not covered by the law.

APHA encourages registration even if you have fewer than 50 birds. If you register, APHA will be able to contact you if there’s a disease outbreak (such as bird flu) in your area. Registration information helps APHA prevent the spread of disease and protect the national poultry flock.

How to register

You’ll need this information to complete the registration form:

  • your contact details
  • contact details for the person or company that controls your site and businesses with which you have a contract for your poultry
  • your site’s location and county parish holding (CPH) number (if you have one)
  • whether your birds are within 500 metres of water which attracts wild birds
  • the species of birds you keep and stock numbers (this can be an approximate number for large flocks)
  • how you keep your birds and what you keep them for
  • a list of other livestock you keep on the site

Complete and submit the form

You can download the APHA customer registration form (IRA56), in English or Welsh.

You can ask for a copy of the form by phoning the GB Poultry Register helpline on 0800 634 1112. Lines are open 8:30am to 5:00pm Monday to Friday.

By Email

Email your completed form to

By Post

Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA)
Cardiff Specialist Service Centre
Poultry Data Team
Government Buildings
66 Ty Glas Road
CF14 5ZB

Update your registration details

You must contact APHA within one month if:

  • you no longer keep or own poultry
  • the contact information you gave changes
  • the size of your flock changes by 20%
  • you change the species you keep

How to update your details

Tell APHA about changes by calling the GB Poultry Register helpline on 0800 634 1112.

Lines are open 8:30am to 5:00pm Monday to Friday.

Sign up for disease alerts

Register with the APHA alerts service to get email and text alerts about disease outbreaks. This applies to all keepers even if you’ve already registered your site (or CPH number) with APHA.

Published 17 June 2014
Last updated 9 February 2018 + show all updates
  1. Amended to clarify the law on: updating registration details; how to do this; and that poultry keepers must complete the registration form.
  2. Added information about the Animal and Plant Health Agency alerts service
  3. Email updated for registration
  4. AHVLA documents have been re-assigned to the new Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA).
  5. First published.