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Chicken ownership on the rise, survey reveals
"People worried about food supplies and saw chicken ownership as a source of fresh food" - Ben Braithwaite.
More people moving to chicken ownership as a sustainable food source during pandemic.

There is a growing trend in chicken ownership in the UK, with up to 200,000 new chicken owners appearing year on year since 2018, according to new research.

A survey by Cambridge-based firm ChickenGuard found that in 2019, there were 1,028,000 chicken owners in the UK, rising to 1,338,000 in 2020. The organisation says this figure has further risen during the coronavirus pandemic, as more people moved to chicken ownership as a sustainable food source.

Ben Braithwaite from ChickenGuard comments: “We have been closely monitoring the rise in chicken ownership over the last couple of years and the pet survey has really shone some light on the growing trend in countries all over the world. The pandemic has brought more households into the fold as people worried about food supplies and saw chicken ownership as also a source of fresh food.

“That, alongside the increase in celebrity keepers, has made chickens more popular than the hamster, guinea pig and the previously most popular feathered friend, the budgie.”

The British Hen Welfare Trust (BHWT) has also reported an uptick in the number of people wanting to re-home chickens during the coronavirus pandemic. Speaking to Sky News earlier this year, BHWT founder Jane Howorth said that the charity's waiting list had grown to record numbers.

"Although this is typically a busy time of year for us as the spring sunshine emerges and people become more interested in outdoor activities, without doubt, COVID-19 has increased interest further still," she said. “A lot of people have been thinking about keeping hens for some time, others simply want to have a supply of fresh eggs at the bottom of the garden."

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Face covering rules expanded

News Story 1
 New rules came into force in England on Saturday (8 August) making it mandatory for clients to wear a face covering in veterinary practices.

The rules, which also apply to cinemas, museums and places of worship, follow a recent spike in coronavirus cases. All clients in England must now wear a face covering when inside a veterinary practice unless they are exempt for age, health or equality reasons. 

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News Shorts
BSAVA webinars to shine the spotlight on selected journal papers

A free series of webinars that take a closer look at selected papers published in the Journal of Small Animal Practice has been produced by the BSAVA.

In the new BSAVA Science webinar series, authors of the featured papers discuss their results with a panel and how they may impact clinical practice. The authors then answer questions submitted by audience members.

The webinars are available via the BSAVA Webinar Library, covering four different papers. JSAP editor Nicola Di Girolamo, said: "Discussing the research with the authors - experts in their field - really helps to bring the papers to life."