By using this website, you consent to our use of cookies. For more information on cookies see our privacy policy page.

Text Size: a a
Home A-Z Index Subscribe/RSS Contact Us Twitter logo small white bird

2015 Sheep Goat Census Commences

Over 45,000 flock owners, registered as keepers of sheep and goats on the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine’s database, will this week receive the Annual Sheep and Goat Census 2015. Completing and returning the census is a legal obligation. As well as fulfilling this requirement, the yearly sheep and goat census is the record retained by the Department as to the number of sheep on each holding. This information forms the basis of quantifying sheep numbers in each country on a particular date. 

More importantly, for flock owners, it is also central in declaring that required stocking rates have been maintained and facilitates the drawing down of payments under schemes such as the Basic Payment Scheme, Areas of Natural Constraints Scheme, AEOS and GLAS, etc. The information is also used during farm/flock inspections. The inspector will have details of the census returns submitted for the holding in the last four or five years and will use this information as the basis for identifying if the animal records have been adequately maintained.

This year the Department has selected Sunday 13 December 2015 as the census date. The onus remains with the flock owner to make sure that the completed census forms reach the Department by closing date of 29 January 2016. It should be noted that the only acceptable proof of postage is a Registered or Express post receipt. A postal certificate is no longer acceptable as proof of postage.

All forms must be returned to Sheep/Goat Census Unit, Direct Payments Division, Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Agriculture House 6E, Kildare Street, Dublin 2.

Registered Online Users will also have the option to submit forms online at


Date Released: 09 December 2015