Any person keeping equine including horses, ponies and donkeys has been urged to fully complete the census 2022 as forms are expected to arrive with 29,000 registered keepers today (Tuesday, November 29).

A comprehensive census return will provide important information in the event of an equine disease outbreak, and when dealing with lost, straying or stolen horses, Senator Victor Boyhan has said.

The equine census 2022 will take place tomorrow night (Wednesday, November 30), the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) has confirmed.

Senator Boyhan, who is also a member of the Oireachtas Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine, has reminded all equine keepers to return a completed census to the DAFM.

Equine keepers are encouraged to submit their 2022 census data online through the dedicated ‘Equine Census 2022’ portal on, using their dedicated username and password.

However, the DAFM confirmed that paper returns will also be accepted for the census 2022.

Equine census 2022

A step-by-step guide to completing the census online is provided with the form. Keepers, however, should be aware that a dual authentication process for accessing the online portal has been introduced to further protect their data.

When using the 2022 census portal for the first time, keepers will be asked to nominate a mobile phone number to which a new specific six-digit code will be texted each time they wish to access the site.

The census online portal has been updated since 2021 to allow keepers to submit 2022 data more easily. Keepers who submitted a 2021 census return can choose to access this information to use it as a base for their 2022 return.

The need to re-enter the 15-digit passport numbers (UELNs) of equines that are already recorded on the DAFM systems and that remain on the premises has therefore been removed.

Keepers with large numbers of equines, even where these are kept across a number of different premises, can chose a bulk upload option on

The DAFM said such keepers should refer to the FAQ sections which will be available on both the online portal and on the department’s website.