AIPZ - Bird Gatherings, Pigeons and Birds of Prey

The latest information on bird gatherings, pigeons and birds of prey can be found below.

Avian Influenza Prevention Zone (AIPZ)

The AIPZ which has been in force in Northern Ireland since 17 November 2021 has been lifted effective 00:01 on 1 June 2022. 

The ban on poultry gatherings, shows and sales has now also been lifted and these are now permitted under general licence.


As infection may still be circulating in the environment, scrupulous standards of biosecurity remain essential and therefore the enhanced biosecurity requirements that were brought in as part of the AIPZ are still considered to be good practice and the guidance should be adhered to as much as possible.

Please see our biosecurity advice(external link opens in a new window / tab) and if you keep poultry or captive birds, please follow our Biosecurity Guidance and use our Biosecurity Checklist.

To help prevent the spread of the disease from wild birds, or another source, to poultry, the following measures are of paramount importance

  • poultry or other captive birds should be provided with food and water to which wild birds have no access;
  • avoiding transfer of contamination between premises by cleansing and disinfecting equipment, vehicles and footwear;
  • separating domestic waterfowl (ducks and geese) from other domestic species; and,
  • reducing the movement of people, vehicles or equipment to and from areas where poultry or captive birds are kept.

See DAERA Press Release

Avian Influenza Prevention Zone in Northern Ireland lifted | Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (

For further details, please see the links below:

Bird Gatherings

As of 1 June 2022 all bird gatherings, shows and sales are permitted under general licence.

The new General Licence is available here


Bird gatherings must meet all the requirements of the licence and DAERA must be notified at least 3 days in advance.

The Department will continue to monitor the avian influenza situation.

Pigeons or birds of prey

As of 12:00 hrs on 29 March 2022, provided gatherings are registered with DAERA and the conditions of the General Licence are complied with, multi-loft training, pigeon racing and other Columbiforme competitions are permitted.

You can exercise and train pigeons or fly birds of prey, including for pest control, but they should avoid direct contact with wild birds.

Pigeon lofts should not be left open for the birds to come and go as they please.

Keep a close watch on the health of your birds.

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