Plants and animals

Much of Queensland's native wildlife is protected by legislation to ensure its survival and to protect biodiversity. All native birds, reptiles, mammals and amphibians are protected in Queensland, along with a limited range of invertebrates, freshwater fish and the grey nurse shark. All plants that are indigenous to Australia are protected.

A licensing system helps protect native wildlife from over exploitation and the impacts of exotic species. Such controls ensure viable wild populations of plants and animals are maintained and that taking, keeping, using or moving wildlife for commercial, recreational or other purposes is monitored.

The type of approvals you will need depends upon a number of things, including:

  • the nature and purpose of your proposed activity
  • the tenure of the area in which you intend to undertake your activity
  • the species of wildlife concerned.

Find out about your legal obligations by reading the material on this website or read the Nature Conservation Act 1992 and the subordinate Nature Conservation Regulations. Copies of the legislation are available online at the Office of Queensland Parliamentary Counsel website.

If you propose to undertake certain activities on other state-managed land, such as state forests or marine parks, you may also need approvals under other legislation.

Protected wildlife management (animals)

The following provides a summary of approvals and activities related to protected wildlife management (animals) (excluding commercial use of animals).

Permits and approvalsSummary of intentPermitted activities
Tamper with breeding placeRemove or relocateCulling – animals, including eggs
A Species Management Program (SMP)

Approval to tamper with an animal breeding place. For example, structures such as bird nests and tree hollows. SMPs should be used as part of planned activities that incorporate management actions that will avoid or minimise both the immediate and the long term impact of removing or altering an animal breeding place.

Rehabilitation Permit

Provides a mechanism for the rehabilitation of sick, injured or orphaned protected animals so that these animals can be returned to the wild. Some native animals need highly specialised care for example koalas, echidna, platypus, raptors and reptiles.

Rehabilitation Permit—spotter catcher

Deals with an animal whose habitat has been destroyed by natural disaster or is about to be destroyed by human activity.

The spotter catcher determines if the animal can be released into a more appropriate habitat, or released to a vet/carer.

Damage Mitigation Permit (DMP)—removal and relocation of wildlife

Provides mechanism to remove nuisance native wildlife from a property, in a safe and humane manner.

Must demonstrate knowledge and experience in the biology and safe handling of wildlife.

Damage Mitigation Permit (DMP)—culling and dispersal of wildlife

Required to identify if culling required to minimise damage or loss of property; and/or

Protect human health or wellbeing?

Permit holders may be required to comply with a code of practice that specifies appropriate and humane methods of taking protected animals

Damage Mitigation Permit (DMP)—lethal take of flying-foxes

Lethal control of flying-foxes is intended to provide fruit growers with an additional form of crop protection only where non-harmful measures have been attempted.

Flying-fox roost management permit

To conduct non-code compliant activities within an UFFMA or manage a roost outside of an UFFMA.


specific requirements apply


specific requirements apply


Keeping native animals

Find out which native animals require a licence to be kept as a pet.

Wildlife emergencies

View contact details for reporting incidents related to wildlife.