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MSPs back ban on wild animals in circuses
"The use of wild animals in this way is emblematic of the way we treat all animals."
Bill passes first stage with unanimous vote

Scottish legislation to ban the use of wild animals in circuses has received unanimous backing from MSPs at Holyrood.

The Wild Animals in Travelling Circuses (Scotland) Bill would make it an offence for circus operators to cause or permit wild animals to be used in travelling circuses in Scotland.

Roseanna Cunningham, cabinet secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform, led a debate on stage 1 of the legislation. MSPs voted in support of the bill’s general principles, but many called for it to be strengthened.

BVA’s Scottish branch president Melissa Donald welcomed the move.

In a statement she said: “This is an issue that BVA has long campaigned on and, while it may not affect a great number of individual animals, the use of wild animals in this way is emblematic of the way we treat all animals.
 
“Scotland is already leading the way on so many animal health and welfare initiatives and this important, cross-party vote shows Scottish Government making good on its promises to ban the use of wild animals in travelling circuses. The first country in the UK to take steps do so.”

It will now pass to stage 2 for detailed consideration and amendments in committee. It will then return to full parliament for final amendments and approval.

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Vets save premature penguin chick

News Story 1
 Vets have saved a tiny Humboldt penguin chick after her egg was accidentally broken by her parents. Keepers at ZSL London Zoo were shocked to find the chick, named Rainbow, still alive and rushed her straight to the Zoo’s on-site veterinary clinic.

It was a little way to go until the chick should have hatched, so the process was touch and go. Vets removed bits of shell from around the chick with tweezers until she could be lifted out and placed in a makeshift nest.

Rainbow is now in a custom-built incubation room where she spends her days cuddled up to a toy penguin. Keepers will hand-fed Rainbow for the next 10 weeks until she is healthy enough to move to the penguin nursery.  

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BVA infographic to help shoppers understand farm assurance schemes

An infographic to help members of the public understand farm assurance schemes has been produced by the BVA. The infographic outlines BVA’s priorities for animal welfare and shows whether or not the schemes address these priorities in their standards.

BVA president John Fishwick said: “The infographic is not intended to be a league table but to allow people to understand what aspects of animal health and welfare are addressed by assurance schemes so that they can decide which scheme best aligns with their own individual preferences and priorities."