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Bird imports

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Bird imports

Community provisions in the area of health policy governing the trade in birds from third countries with the aim of promoting the harmonious development of imports of certain species in the Community and preventing the risk of disease.


Commission Regulation (EC) No 318/2007 of 23 March 2007 laying down animal health conditions for imports of certain birds into the Community and the quarantine conditions thereof (Text with EEA relevance) [See amending acts].


This Regulation governs imports of certain species of birds and fixes the quarantine conditions applicable to these imports.


This Regulation covers birds, with the exception of poultry * which is governed by Directive 90/539/EEC.

The following are excluded from the scope of the said Regulation:

  • birds imported for conservation programmes;
  • pets;
  • birds intended for zoos, circuses, amusement parks or experiments;
  • birds intended for approved bodies, institutes or centres
  • racing pigeons which are introduced into the Community to be released in order to fly back to the place where they are normally kept in the third country;
  • birds imported from Andorra, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Norway, San Marino, Switzerland and the Vatican City State.

Import conditions

Imports of birds are limited to animals from breeding establishments approved by the competent authority in the third country, subject to the conditions set out in Annex II of the Regulation.

Birds imported into the Community must satisfy the following conditions:

  • be captive bred birds;
  • originate from third countries as per Annex I;
  • negative results following a detection test for avian influenza and Newcastle disease virus carried out one to two weeks prior to their shipment;
  • not have been vaccinated against avian influenza;
  • be accompanied by an animal health certificate in accordance with the model set out in Annex III;
  • be identified using either a leg-ring or a microchip;
  • the leg-ring or microchip must include an identification number appearing on the animal health certificate;
  • be transported in new containers bearing the identification number indicated on the animal health certificate.

Transport to quarantine facilities

Birds shall be transported directly from the border inspection post to an approved quarantine facility as listed in Annex V.

The transport of birds is to be carried out in vehicles sealed by the competent authorities. The total journey time must not exceed nine hours.

Quarantine provisions

The birds are to stay in quarantine for at least thirty days. At the beginning and the end of quarantine, an official veterinarian shall inspect the health condition of each consignment of birds. Further inspections may take place if the disease situation so requires.

During quarantine, the official veterinarian shall carry out tests for avian influenza and Newcastle disease (described in Annex VI). The tests are to be carried out on sentinel birds * or on at least sixty birds per consignment.

The official veterinarian at the quarantine centre is the only person authorised to lift the quarantine.

When the presence of avian Influenza or Newcastle disease is suspected or confirmed during quarantine, the following measures will be taken by the competent authorities:

  • In case of suspicion
    • the facility is officially examined;
    • samples for virological examination are taken (Annex VI, point 2)
    • no birds are to enter or leave the facility before the suspicion is lifted.
  • If the case is confirmed:
    • all birds are killed and destroyed;
    • the facility is cleaned and disinfected;
    • no birds shall enter the facility during the twenty-one days following the final cleaning and disinfection;
    • samples from birds in other units of the quarantine centre are taken for the purposes of serological or virological examination (Annex VI, point 2);
    • if the results of examinations reveal that birds from other units are infected, birds must not leave the quarantine centre.

If it is suspected that psittaciformes (parrots, parakeets and cockatoos) are infected with chlamydiosis, all birds in the consignment are to be treated according to a method approved by the competent authority. The quarantine period is extended for at least two months following the last recorded case of disease.

Member States must inform the Commission within twenty-four hours following the outbreak of a case of avian influenza or Newcastle disease in a quarantine centre.

Key terms used in the Act

  • Poultry: chickens, turkeys, guinea fowl, ducks, geese, quails, pigeons, pheasants, partridges and ratites reared or kept in captivity for the purposes of producing meat or eggs for consumption, the production of other products, the re-stocking of game birds or for the purposes of a breeding programme for the reproduction of these types of birds.
  • Sentinel birds: birds used as a diagnostic aid during quarantine.



Entry into force

Deadline for transposition in the Member States

Official Journal

Regulation (EC) No 318/2007



OJ L 84 of 24.3.2007

Amending Act(s)

Entry into force

Deadline for transposition in the Member States

Official Journal

Regulation (EC) No 1278/2007



OJ L 284 of 30.10.2007

Successive amendments and corrections to Regulation (EEC) No 318/2007 2092/91 have been incorporated in the basic text. This consolidated version is for reference purposes only.


Annex V - List of approved quarantine facilities and centres

Regulation (EC) No 1278/2007 [Official Journal L 284 of 30.10.2007];

Regulation (EC) No 86/2008 [Official Journal L 27 of 31.1.2008];

Regulation (EC) No 311/2008 [Official Journal L 93 of 4.4.2008]; Regulation (EC) No 607/2008 [Official Journal L 166 of 27.6.2008]; Regulation (EC) No 754/2008 [Official Journal L 205 of 1.8.2008];

Regulation (EC) No 1219/2008 [Official Journal L 205 of 1.8.2008];

Regulation (EC) No 1294/2008 [Official Journal L 340 of 19.12.2008]; Regulation (EC) No 201/2009 [Official Journal L 71 of 17.3.2009].

Last updated: 15.06.2010