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How do I get a Zoo Licence??

(17 Posts)
atworknotworking Mon 10-Aug-09 13:26:08

If I opened a bird of prey centre and petting zoo what kind of licence do I need or planning permissions?

Council doesn't know can anyone here help me please.


tinytalker Mon 10-Aug-09 16:46:43

Maybe the RSPCA would be your best reference.

MrAnchovy Mon 10-Aug-09 16:50:24

Get back on to the council, their Environmental Health department are responsible to DEFRA for licensing and inspecting zoos according to this information (google is your friend).

nannynick Mon 10-Aug-09 16:57:52

Also talk to town planning department (local council, or county council - varies by area) with regard to planning permission requirements. I would have thought that planning consent would be needed... especially concerning things like how visitor's were getting to you, car parking.

wannaBe Mon 10-Aug-09 17:00:38

I think it depends on what kind of animals you are hoping to keep.

You don't need a licence to keep birds of prey (which is why they so often end up in bad homes) but certain birds do need to be licenced ie buzzards/harris hawks/certain owls etc as they are found in the wild here so every one born and raised in captivity needs to be registered iyswim. (presumably you should already know that though if you have experience of birds of prey?)

Agree you would need to speak to environmental health, also re what kind of insurance you require for a petting zoo...

atworknotworking Mon 10-Aug-09 18:28:07

Thank you all for your replies, council kinda new not a lot, said if the land was used as a farm then wouldn't need permission, but obviously i know the bird centre will need a licence as some of the birds will be vultures, hawks etc, but they didn't have a clue where to ask or what to do, they did say I would have to talk to public protection.

I have wanted to open a petting farm for children for a long while as their is nothing local in our area that is a good quality, easily accessible, child friendly place, and my sister is setting up a birds of prey display business so I was looking at possibly combining the two and having a centre and educational facility on site.

Thanks again I will have a look at the info.

nannynick Mon 10-Aug-09 22:04:03

Perhaps try contacting similar centers in other parts of the country. Never know they may be helpful and tell you about what registrations/licences and planning permissions they needed to start running.

In terms of petting farm... to get the animals to the farm, would you need a Animal Movement License? Defra: Animal Move Same page also mentions about Registration of Animals (Pigs, Sheep, Goats).

This PDF mentions about Article 10 Certificates... something to do with Birds of Prey used Commercially - your sister probably knows about that, being the bird expert.

Hawk Board has some information about showing Birds of Prey to the public. Joining associations like that will probably enable you to find out more about what you need to do to show birds to the public.

If having it as a place for school visits, your county council may have some kind of registration system for that. Example: Lancashire list of Farms.

nannynick Mon 10-Aug-09 22:10:48

Found an association for Farm Attractions.

National Farm Attractions Network

"Whether you have an existing rural business or are inspired to diversify into rural leisure and tourism, the NFAN will help you in every way possible towards setting up and maintaining your business. Signposting you in the right direction for professional advice and guidance."

Sounds like the people you need to talk to with regard to the Petting Farm side of the business.

nannynick Mon 10-Aug-09 23:34:14

Another to look at - School Farms Network - seems to be farms based on school land, but also other farms associated with local schools.

Could be something to look at... making your place an educational farm for local schools in the area.

atworknotworking Tue 11-Aug-09 13:59:36

What would we do without you Nannynick !!

I think your'e smashing wink

littlefraggle Tue 11-Aug-09 14:31:09

Hi everyone, I'm 'atworknotworking's sister.
Thank you all for your replies and your research! grin

I know about the licences we'll need for our actual birds, the A10s etc, because I do falconry already. It's the centre bit I'm confused with sad

We're just getting a bit confused with the Zoo Licence part, my local council knows absolutely nothing about them. I'm just trying to find out if there are any guidelines before you apply. What are you actually assessed on? Are they just bothered with the health and safety of your birds? Or does public health and safety come into it too? Are they bothered about people cleaning out the aviary without a hard hat on?? lol

If anyone's ever worked for a local authority and has an idea I'd appreciate a poke in the right direction please!

Thanks in advance.

mrsbaldwin Tue 11-Aug-09 16:58:27

Omigod what a great thread!

I think you have to ask Defra, as NannyNick says - try the Defra Helpline which should be listed on their website.

mollyroger Tue 11-Aug-09 17:08:12

I have nothing v useful to add except - how very cool

Assuming you are not going to be in competition with them, this place in scarborough started out as a small holding selling cakes. Then opened petting zoo, then playground, then a bird of prey centre.
Now they are a very sweet and popular attraction in their own right.
They might, if you asked nicely, be willing to give some advice??

Betton farm near scarborough

atworknotworking Tue 11-Aug-09 17:44:51

Awww thank you all, don't you just luv the Mumsnetters grin

llareggub Wed 12-Aug-09 19:01:37

Our local Trading Standards are responsible for animal health and registration.

atworknotworking Thu 13-Aug-09 09:59:53

Thanks all for your replies all been great, have a lot of research to do now. Our council is a bit hmm didn't think about Trading Standards, will give them a call as they have been quite helpful in the past with stuff.

vonsudenfed Thu 13-Aug-09 10:10:48

Just to second what a few other people have said, do ask other similar attractions (preferably not too close to you!) for advice.

When I was looking at setting up a very different kind of business, I went and talked to five or six people who had done similar and/or related things. They were all delighted to be asked, gave me loads of time and advice about pitfalls and tips, and were almost entirely lovely.

If you need a loan from the bank to set up the business, as well, that kind of research also helps your case

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