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Animal movements

All movements of cattle, sheep, goats, pigs and deer must be recorded and reported to the appropriate agency. On-farm movement records must be kept to record all movements on and off the holding, births, deaths and replacement tags.

As a livestock owner, you must be aware of the regulations and keep the required records.

Straying livestock

It is the responsibility of a livestock owner to prevent their livestock straying and they may be liable for damages caused by straying livestock. For more information see the Animals Act 1971.

If you see livestock straying on a public highway contact the Police on 101.

If livestock has strayed on to your private land such as your garden, contact the farmer to let them know. If the animals have caused any damage, this is a civil matter between the land owner and farmer.

The general licence (including standstill)

All movements of deer, sheep, goats, pigs and cattle are controlled by the general licence issued by Defra. A 6 or 20 day standstill period applies after an animal is moved onto a holding.

Everything else you need to know about movements, records and identification is available from the GOV.UK website and can be found using the links below:



Sheep and goats


Record books

Download and print movement record books: