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New Caudata rules set to come into force in July
Bsal has been detected in different species of salamander across the UK, both kept as pets and in the wild.
Rules to prevent spread of deadly fungus amongst newts and salamanders

New rules on the import of Caudata amphibians are to be implemented across the UK following a decision by the European Commission.

The new rules come into force on the 1 July, 2018 and seek to prevent the spread of the fungal pathogen Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Bsal) amongst newts and salamanders.

According to the European Food Safety Authority, Bsal has been detected in different species of salamander across the UK, both kept as pets and in the wild. Cases have been reported in Germany, Belgium, Spain, the Netherlands and the UK. In some salamander species, Bsal has been shown to cause high mortality.

The Ornamental Aquatic Trade Association (OATA) has urged anyone involved in the import, export or sale of Caudata species to familiarise themselves with the new rules and to ensure any animals they buy and sell conform.

The rules cover the whole of the UK and, to import Caudata or move between EU countries, individuals must:
  • use the custom code 0106900000
  • have the appropriate health certificates
  • pre-notify APHA of non-EU imports (CVED) or FHI for EU imports (BSAL2). They will also need to do this if they wish to export Caudata to the EU or if the import is from outside the EU
  • quarantine animals at a Fish Health Inspectorate (FHI) registered appropriate establishment and get a written authorisation from them for release once the animals have completed the quarantine period.
Pets, defined as five or fewer animals accompanied by their owner, are excluded from the rules. Acquiring animals from a trade show, shop or hobbyist to become part of a collection is not defined as moving a pet.

Further information can be obtained from the Fish Health Inspectorate: fhi@cefas.co.uk

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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."