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Defra publishes new general licences for the control of wild birds
The use of these licences will aid wildlife conservation as well as protecting crops, livestock and public health and safety.

New licences come into force on 1 January 2021

Defra has published three new general licences for the control of wild birds, following the completion of the department's review and user survey into general licencing.

The new general licences – GL40,GL41 and GL42 – will come into force on January 1 2021. Replacing licences GL34, GL35 and GL36. Publication of the new licences will help user groups to become familiar with them before this date.

The use of these licences will help prevent serious damage to crops and livestock, as well as aiding wildlife conservation and protecting public health and safety.

The following changes have been made following Defra's review:

  • All licences include clearer definitions of the birds that can be controlled for certain purposes. For example, jackdaws and rooks will no longer be able to be controlled for conservation purposes.
  • It is now a licence condition that users must comply with the requirements of GL33 to ensure the welfare of trapped birds, in line with agreed standards.
  • Improvements to the usability and readability of the licences.

As before, the new general licences be available for use on and around protected sites, provided that the user adheres to any conditions that apply to that site and has the permission of Natural England if necessary.

Environment secretary George Eustice said: “We have undertaken an extensive process to review the scientific evidence as well as over 4,000 responses to our general licence user survey, to help ensure we have a long-term licensing system which balances the needs of users and our wildlife.

“We have taken on feedback to help ensure these new licences are fit for purpose, and will continue to work with stakeholders to ensure our licensing process is robust for wildlife and workable for users going forward.”

For further details, please visit the UK government website.

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Boehringer Ingelheim to host online Christmas comedy special

News Story 1
 Boehringer Ingelheim (BI) Animal Health is set to host a live Christmas comedy event to provide entertainment and festive fun for veterinary professionals.

BI Animal Health's Christmas Comedy Cracker is a free online event, designed to help veterinary professionals sit back and relax at the end of what has been a difficult year for the whole profession.

The event will take place online at 8pm on Thursday 17 December. Comedian Rhys James will host and the line-up also includes ventriloquist Nina Conti, comedian Zoe Lyons and musical comedy troupe The Noise Next Door.

To register your place for free please visit www.christmascomedycracker.co.uk 

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News Shorts
VMD and VPS announce joint open information day

The Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) and the Veterinary Products Committee (VPC) have announced a joint open information day covering topics such as veterinary medicines regulations, antimicrobial resistance, scientific advice and novel therapies.

Taking place on Wednesday 18 November, the virtual event will take the form of a series of pre-recorded webinars and a 'Slido' Q&A session. Links to the webinars and full instructions on how to use Slido will be available on gov.uk on 18 November. To join the mailing list for the event, email director.support@vmd.gov.uk