Layers - Salmonella Testing Requirements for Laying Birds

Free Range Layers

Post-cleaning and prior to a new flock going into the house:

Please take:

1 gauze swab (blue Sponge) from EACH of the following NINE areas PER HOUSE

  • Floors surfaces (including cracked areas)
  • Walls (including cracked areas)
  • High beams/ledges and pipe-work
  • Fans & fan housing
  • Manure belts/droppings board, scratching areas
  • In-house open feed hoppers/feeders
  • Drinkers/nipple spillage troughs/cups
  • Nest boxes/cage interiors
  • Egg delivery belts/elevators

Please ensure that both sides of pad are used.
These may be tested in 1 or more composites.

Also take up to 25g of rodent faeces, from surfaces in house, or service area if none available in house. If none available, producer is to sign a declaration and take gauze swab from areas around bait boxes.

If a previous flock has tested positive for Salmonella Enteritidis or Salmonella Typimurium. Please see us for an alternative testing kit.

Commencing at 22-26 weeks of age

Please take 2 pairs of boot swabs PER HOUSE every 15 weeks until depletion.

These are to be taken from each flock (house or separate biosecure section of the house). The boot swabs must be moistened before sampling is carried out- clean tap water is suitable for this but some sampling kits will have pre-moistened boot swabs. Ensure there can be no contamination of swabs prior to use and that they cannot come into contact with disinfectant.

Boot swabs should represent the whole area to which the birds have access. This will include all the separate pens, littered and slattered areas (when they are safe to walk on) and involves taking about 100 paces to cover an area of approximately 50% of the house. Take the swabs before replenishing bedding.

On completion of sampling in each sector carefully remove the boot swabs so as not to dislodge adherent material. The boot swabs can then be placed together in the sealable bag provided for dispatch within 24 hours.


All samples should be dispatched within 24 hours of collection. The BEIC Lion Code require all producers to ensure that the time between sampling and the lab starting to process the sample to be no later than 48 hours

For samples that fall outside of this time frame will not be able to have the laboratories UKAS accreditation mark on their salmonella results.

To avoid this please ensure samples are sent and received within 48 hours of sampling, it is therefore, not advisable to send samples on a Friday or Saturday, as they will not be tested until the following Monday, which will result in the 48 hour rule being breached.