What Is Gas Stunning?
Gas stunning is a common technique used in bird culling and poultry slaughter processes. Outbreaks of avian flu have been spreading across the UK and beyond for the past several months, resulting in necessary bird culling to limit the spread of disease.
Avian flu spreads from country to country as wild birds migrate seasonally. There are several strains which do little harm to the birds but currently it is a deadly strain, H5N1, causing the endemic. It is highly contagious amongst birds and there is currently a UK wide requirement for all birds to be kept indoors and away from wild birds to try and limit the spread of disease.
Bird keepers must implement strict biosecurity measures, such as regular handwashing and wearing protective clothing and footwear to avoid an outbreak. If evidence of the disease is found, it leads to the unfortunate, necessary culling of the infected bird flock and the close monitoring of birds kept nearby. Bird housing must also be thoroughly decontaminated, and any nearby paths are closed as the disease can spread on shoes and clothes.
Which Gas Is Used For Gas Stunning?
The process of legally killing any animal must be carried out humanely in accordance with UK Government guidance. Similar standards are expected to be met for bird culling as for poultry slaughter. The process must not cause unnecessary distress or prolonged suffering to the animal.
One such process that aims to do so during bird culling is CO2 stunning before killing the animals. When carried out properly, CO2 stunning will render the animal unconscious, minimising the pain and distress to the animal during the process.
Gas stunning, or Controlled Atmosphere Stunning, uses mixtures of gases such as carbon dioxide, nitrogen and argon to make the animal lose consciousness. To ensure animal welfare, European Regulations are in place for measuring and monitoring the concentrations of gas used in gas stunning. Gas stunning is also common practice before poultry slaughter. You can read more about how carbon dioxide is used in poultry slaughter here.
Gas Stunning Sensors: Guardian and GasCard NG
Edinburgh Sensors offer 2 gas sensing solutions for to measure and monitor gas concentrations during CO2 stunning.
Our Guardian and GasCard NG offer highly accurate, online sensing capability for carbon dioxide with real-time data logging and the possibility to integrate the sensors with alarm features or other gas-monitoring sensors as required. The use of alarms with gas monitors is a key part of UK legislation for gas stunning processes, such as CO2 stunning, and it is essential that any gas monitors used are extremely accurate, as small deviations in gas concentrations can cause issues with the stunning process and compliance with legislation.
If you would like to find out more about how Edinburgh Sensors can help you with your CO2 stunning or gas monitoring needs, contact our sales team who will be happy to assist you.
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