International Ornithological Association
Founder Member COM-UK

Affiliated to the Confederation Ornithologique Mondiale

Legal Advice

IOA Legal Advice.


According to a statement by Natural England on their website dated May 2011. Due to a taxonomic review by the British Ornithological Union in 2001, the Lesser Redpoll formally termed (Carduelis flammea caberet) has in effect by default been removed from Schedule 3 Part 1, where the Redpoll is listed as Carduelis flammea, which covered all Redpolls with the exception of species, Carduelis homemanni “Arctic Redpoll”.

Discussions with D.E.F.R.A. and N.E. to resolve the issue have to date not reached a satisfactory conclusion.

With the show season and sale season fast approaching after some discussions with the B.O.U. in regards to ancestry of captive bred stocks of Redpoll, the B.B.C./I.O.A. and the N.C.A. issue the following advice to keepers, breeders, sellers, exhibitors and show promoters.

Due to their mixed race ancestry captive bred Redpolls shall for the present time be referred to as Common Redpoll (Carduelis flammea).

The term lesser to be deleted from nomenclature. Small captive bred versions to be referred to as Common Redpoll, large versions as Mealy Redpoll.

Should you belive you have any captive bred pure carberet (which is highly unlikely) or Artic Redpoll (Carduelis homemanni) that you wish to sell or show you will need to abide by regulations within GL18 and GL14. Please see Natural England website at:-

Licence to sell unrung birds.

It would appear that Natural England have had a change of direction, although in the past we were informed that unrung birds (Birds not rung with an official closed ring) could not be sold under licence but could be passed on only as a gift. Recently N.E. granted a licence WLF 026837 for an unrung bird to be sold namely a colour variant Northern Bullfinch, (Pyrrhula Pyrrhula) without documentary evidence of captive breeding. It would appear that providing documentary evidence of captive breeding is supplied the application form along with other necessary details, a licence can also be granted for a normal coloured unrung bird. Licence application forms can be obtained from the Wildlife Licensing Unit, Natural England, First Floor, Temple Quay House, 2 The Square, Bristol.BS1 6EB.

Tel.0845 601 4523.

Keep Records.

The IOA wish’s to stress the importance of keeping records of your birds although the Act does not specifically require records to be kept, it is implicit in the current legislation that there has to be some burden of proof on bird keepers that their birds, and more importantly their parents, were legally in captivity at the time of breeding, this has been shown in recent court cases.

The IOA committee strongly advises all members to join The Scottish Association For Country Sports (SACS) from Scotland run by Ian Clark. The membership is £30 per year but for the membership you will receive up to £100,000 of legal expense if you have the misfortune to be paid a visit by the law.

The I.O.A. now runs a club membership scheme for SACS at a cost of £25.00 per year per member, please make all cheques payable to

the I.O.A. and send them to:-


Alan Robinson

I.O.A. Secretary

2 Gawber Road


S. Yorks. S75 2AF

Tel:- 01226 286066

Mob:- 07947808933