There is information circulating on social media regarding EU Regulation 2016/429. This regulation, that is relevant to the transport of animals, has been in force since 2016. However, the concerns raised in the posts relate to supplementary requirements of EU Regulation 2020/688 which comes into force in 2021, in particular the interpretation that the relevant article requires animals to be ‘quarantined’ for 21 days after attending sporting events in other EU countries. In the case of pigeon racing this would mean quarantined within the loft. This is obviously unworkable and would be detrimental to pigeon racing all over Europe.
The RPRA has already approached DEFRA and the APHA to seek clarification. In addition other European racing organisations have contacted their government departments. This issue has also been raised with the FCI.
The EU has a long history of recognising pigeon racing as a historic and cultural activity that requires a different approach to transportation, disease control and animal transport in general. We are positive that any issue that may result from the new regulation will be clarified as soon as possible and discussions opened, in order to reach a position that facilitates our requirements as a cultural activity.