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Required records, ID and tracing - sheep

This is only a summary of what the Regulations require. If you are unsure what to do on your farm then contact the Agriculture Directorate for advice.

All keepers of sheep must register their sheep holdings with the department. Please use the link below to apply online.

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  • To ensure all sheep can be identified.
  • To ensure the owner or keeper can be traced.
  • To ensure traceability in the food chain.
  • To allow disease control to be maintained.
  • To enable tracing of sheep movements for disease in contact sheep and for any slaughter policy.


There is a legal requirement to mark all sheep with a permanent and official identification. This is an EU Regulation which currently is enacted in Manx Law through:

  • Animal Health Act 1996
  • Sheep and Goats Identification Order 2000
  • Sheep and Goats (Record, Identification and Movement) Order 2015

Records keeping

The Keepers are required to hold additional records detailing year of birth for sheep born after 1 January 2012. The Department is no longer producing sheep movement books. However, the downloadable template can be used to fulfil this requirement. Keepers may also wish to retain the records electronically - this is acceptable as long as a copy can be provided should an Inspector require it at any time.

Please see the tagging chart for guidance on which tags to use.

Legislation requirements:

Details of all sheep and goats moved, sold, re-identified and deaths must be recorded within 36 hours of the event. The flock/herdmark and individual number must be recorded to identify and trace sheep or goats traded. Keepers are required to hold additional records detailing year of birth and the month of identification (for sheep born after 1 January 2012). All records, (paper, electronic or otherwise) must be made available to a Department Officer upon request. Sheep and Goat records must be retained for at least 3 years.

General notes:

Sheep moved from a holding are required to be marked with appropriate eartag(s) bearing the flockmark of birth or residence, together with an individual identity mark, depending on age.

Additional information: On or before 4 June each year the total number of sheep and/or goats on a holding on the 4 May in that year shall be recorded as a separate entry in the movement book.

For further information please contact:

Animal Health Team – Regulation Directorate

Thie Slieau Whallian

Foxdale Road

St John's


Telephone:+44 1624 685844

Email:Send Email

The Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture is committed to ensuring that its services are accessible to all. If you require these documents in an alternative format and / or language please contact us to discuss your needs.

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