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Avian Influenza – Code of Practice for Pigeon Racing

The Avian Influenza Code of Practice has been updated and may be downloaded here

The code is based on the legal requirements, and every member and organisation should read the document.

In addition, it will provide clarity in respect of what can be done if your loft is situated within a disease control area. 

To establish if your loft is in a disease control area please visit the APHA’s interactive map.


30/11/21: In view of the current situation with Avian Influenza (bird flu), we have uploaded an updated version of the Avian Influenza – Code of Practice for Pigeon Racing.

Amendments to the previous document have been highlighted in red. This document should be read in its entirety and strictly followed and implemented.

Once the current position has improved the Code of Practice will be updated.

Ian Evans


12.02.18: You will be aware that over recent years the presence of Avian Influenza within domestic birds has resulted in the movement of certain birds being restricted. This could potentially have a devastating impact on pigeon racing and showing. However, to date Defra’s risk based approach in relation to pigeons has resulted in a limited impact on pigeon racing and showing.

To maintain and strengthen this position a Code of Practice has been developed and agreed with Defra. Please note that full compliance with the requirements of the General Licence for Bird Gatherings, i.e. racing marking, liberations, shows and multiple loft training, is a legal requirement. The code should supply all the information relevant to comply with the General Licence requirements.

Within the code you will notice:
• that the RPRA are required to inform the APHA of all gatherings (for affiliated organisations) in relation to race marking and racing. 
• a sample contingency plan. This should be visible at each gathering.

Non-compliance with the code and the requirements of the General Licence will have a detrimental impact on the positive outcome of Defra’s risk based approach to pigeon racing and showing – something we all want to avoid.



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