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Understanding your obligations: Wildlife Basic or Advanced Licence 

This is a summary of some of the key requirements of your wildlife licence. It is your responsibility to understand and adhere to all licence obligations. 

Renewal of your wildlife licence

  • You must renew your wildlife licence before it expires to lawfully keep wildlife.
  • You should keep a record of your payment details until you receive your new licence in the mail.

Obtaining wildlife

  • Holders of a Basic licence can only keep wildlife listed in Schedules 2 and 7 of the Wildlife Regulations 2013External Link .
  • Holders of an Advanced licence can only keep wildlife listed in Schedules 2, 3 and 7 of the Wildlife Regulations 2013External Link .
  • You do not need a licence to keep wildlife listed in Schedule 4 of the Wildlife Regulations 2013External Link . If you have these species, you also do not need to record them in your Protected Wildlife Record Book or Annual Return.
  • You can only trade wildlife with a person who has a licence that also allows them to keep the wildlife. Always ask to see a person’s wildlife licence and ensure it is valid.
  • It is illegal to keep wildlife taken from the wild. If you find injured or orphaned wildlife, please contact the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) at 136 186.

Caring for your wildlife

  • You must adhere to all requirements under the relevant codes of practice for housing and caring for your wildlife - see further information.
  • You can only keep wildlife at the address listed on your licence. You cannot take wildlife from the property for any reason other than taking it to a registered vet for treatment or to an approved wildlife event.
  • You must keep wildlife in suitable enclosures that prevent the animal from escaping, ensure it is safe from predators and provide for the good health and welfare of the animal.

Disposing of wildlife

  • You can only sell or give wildlife to a person who holds the correct type of wildlife licence.
  • If you have held wildlife for less than six months and want to dispose of it, you must get prior written permission from DELWP. Email your request to wildlifelicensing@delwp.vic.gov.au.
  • If you are selling your wildlife, including on online forums such as Gumtree or Facebook, the advertisement must include your Wildlife Licence Number.
  • If you are taking your wildlife interstate (or buying or selling wildlife with a person from interstate) you must obtain an Import or Export Permit from DELWP prior to transport.

Records and record keeping

  • Your Wildlife Record Book as a key requirement of your licence. You must record all wildlife transactions (purchases, sales, deaths, breeding and escapes) on the same day that they occur.
  • Your Wildlife Record Book is the property of DELWP. If you choose to cancel your licence prior to its expiry or to not renew your licence, you must return it to DELWP.
  • When you complete your Wildlife Record Book, it must be complete, legible and in permanent ink.
  • You must submit your Annual Return for the year ending 31 March by no later than 14 April.
  • You must submit an Annual Return each year even if:
    • you no longer have wildlife but still have a licence
    • there have been no changes to your wildlife collection
    • you have a three-year licence.
  • You must keep a copy of the Annual Return that you submit to DELWP each year.

Things you must report

  • If you change your name or move to a new house, you must notify DELWP within 10 business days of moving by emailing wildlifelicencing@delwp.vic.gov.au
  • You must report the escape or theft of wildlife to DELWP by email within two business days of becoming aware of the loss. This must also be recorded in your Record Book.
  • You must report the loss, theft or damage to your Wildlife Record Book or Annual Returns to DELWP by email within two business days of becoming aware of the loss.

Further information

Contact us

Conservartion Regulator has more information on the keeping and trading of wildlife.

You can also contact us by calling 138 186 or email wildlifelicensing@delwp.vic.gov.au.


Author:
Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action
Date:
April 2022

Reviewed 06 April 2022