Here Stephen Lister of Crowshall Veterinary and Christine Nicol of Bristol University update delegates on progress and appeal for egg producers to take part in the survey being carried out by the University of Bristol to see if flocks that are not beak trimmed can perform in a flock in the same way and with the same mortality rates as birds that are beak trimmed.
When FAWC recommended delaying the introduction of the beak trimming ban it said that the ban should be deferred until it could be demonstrated reliably under commercial conditions that non-beak-trimmed laying hens could be managed without a greater risk to their welfare than that caused by beak trimming itself. But Jim Paice said the egg industry should expect the ban to go ahead in 2016.
We must get this right? If we ban beak trimming we will see higher levels of mortality and cannabalism of the most severe order.