In late November, we were delighted, to be invited as the only trade representative to showcase our range of clear handling tubes during the NC3RS Refined Handling Workshop where more than 80 delegates from across the UK and Europe attended a series of seminars on the use of refined, less stress-inducing methods of handling our precious charges. Presentations by specialists from Liverpool University, Newcastle and Nottingham looked at the evidently negative effects of traditional methods such as tail handling and, in contrast, the proven positive improvements gained from the use of clear handling tubes and cupped hand methods.
The talks were evidence based and highly practical and certainly led to useful discussion and debate amongst the delegates. Important practicalities were raised such as the fact that, in some circumstances, tubes could potentially be pushed up against the water inlet leading to potential leaks. In such cases the Datesand tunnel with clip attached solves the problem as it can be fixed to the roof of the cage and well away from the inlet. The group also heard that studies from Liverpool and Newcastle have proven that clear tunnel handling reduces urination and defecation with the obvious benefit of keeping the bedding cleaner and drier for longer.
In the course of the meeting we were informed that from January 2019 the Home Office will be visiting all UK facilities. If units have not already implemented a refined handling method, they will need scientific justification for not doing so. If that justification can’t be provided, the Home Office will require units to trial the Handling Tube or cupping method.
The team from NC3Rs were delighted both with the attendance and with the presentations given and discussions which followed. Mark thanked Datesand for supporting the initiative and invited us to attend future events of this kind. All delegates left that day with lots of facts, lots of ideas and samples of both the Tube 100 and Tube 130 products from Datesand.
You can find out more about handling methods both traditional and refined at the excellent NC3Rs website. The website is an absolute mine of information about all aspects of the 3Rs initiative.