Damage mitigation permits

Queensland’s native wildlife is protected by the Nature Conservation Act 1992 (the Act) and regulations to ensure the conservation of nature. A licence, permit or authority is required to take, keep and use many native plants and animals.

From time to time, wildlife and humans come into conflict for a range of reasons. The Act recognises that in some situations, it is necessary to take wildlife to minimise damage or loss of property (e.g. crops) or to protect human health or wellbeing.

A damage mitigation permit allows a person to take wildlife in such circumstances. To be eligible for a damage mitigation permit, applicants will need to demonstrate that there is a real need to take the wildlife, and that they have taken reasonable steps to mitigate the damage caused by the wildlife.

The following types of damage mitigation permits are available under the Act:

  • damage mitigation permit (lethal take of flying-foxes)
  • damage mitigation permit (removal and relocation of wildlife)
  • damage mitigation permit (culling and dispersal of wildlife).

As at 22 August 2020, the maximum duration of a damage mitigation permit is:

  • three years for the purpose of non-lethal removal and relocation of wildlife (‘catch and release’ activities) other than flying-foxes
  • three years if an applicant operates under an ‘approved property management plan’
  • one year in all other cases.

An approved property management plan is defined in the regulation as a plan that is about the management of the land, provides for the conservation of wildlife on the land and is approved by the department.

The purpose of a property management plan is to provide an accredited wildlife management framework which accommodates land management activities, while protecting and conserving wildlife, and operates as an ‘approved property management plan’ as defined in the Nature Conservation (Animals) Regulation 2020.

Aviation authorities/commercial airports: damage mitigation

Some aviation authorities and commercial airports at Strategic Airports are authorised to take, remove and relocate a protected animal to protect public safety if the animal is impacting on airport operations (such as birds and bats interfering with runways).

Reasonable attempts must first be taken to prevent or minimise the threat and any action that is taken must not adversely affect the survival of the animal in the wild.

Pre-lodgement service

The department offers a service to guide applicants through the assessment process. The service includes meeting with a departmental project manager to discuss the information that must be provided with your application.

This service can be initiated by contacting Permit and Licence Management or by email at or completing a Pre-design conference application form (DOCX, 183.9KB) . If a meeting is required to discuss your application in more detail, a departmental officer will contact you directly.

Apply for a Damage mitigation permit (removal and relocation of wildlife)

Through the department's online licensing system, you can:

  • update and manage your contact, address and business information online
  • complete applications and instantly submit online
  • make online payments via credit card
  • have access to online lodgement of annual returns.

To apply for any damage mitigation permit (removal and relocation of wildlife), please register with Online Services.

Applications will still be accepted outside the department's online licensing system by completing the Damage mitigation permit (removal and relocation of wildlife) form (DOCX, 125.6KB) . However, paper-based applications will not have the benefits associated with Online Services and incomplete information will be returned to you for review and resubmission.

Important notes regarding the use of Online Services

If you currently hold a damage mitigation permit (removal and relocation of wildlife), granted under the Nature Conservation Act 1992 before Online Services commenced, your existing licence information will not be available in Online Services, either immediately or in the future. Only new applications processed under Online Services will be available.

Permits and approvals

To apply for a damage mitigation permit, you will need to lodge a completed application form.

Under the Act, the department has up to 40 days to process applications, however the more comprehensive and detailed your application is, the more promptly the department is able to make fully informed and prompt decision.

Contact Permit and Licence Management or email for assistance.

People who take protected wildlife have a legal obligation to ensure that they do so with minimal pain and suffering to the animal. Permit holders may be required to comply with a code of practice that specifies appropriate and humane methods of taking protected animals under damage mitigation permits for species where this is permitted.