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Licences & permits > Wildlife permits > Laws and guidelines

Take from the Wild – Policy and Standard

Taking native animals from the wild is a regulated activity in South Australia.

Under the NPW Act, to 'take' means "…any act of hunting, catching, restraining, killing or injuring, and any act of attempting or assisting to hunt, catch, restrain, kill or injure".

The Policy and Standard on Taking from the Wild contain South Australia’s position on taking protected animals from the wild, and the assessment criteria used by the Department for Environment and Water when considering a permit application.

The Policy adopts the ethic that a limited take from the wild is acceptable, and acknowledges the broader conservation and public knowledge benefits that come from having wildlife in captivity. For example, people learn about, enjoy and appreciate wildlife through interacting with native animals in captivity. 

Who can apply?

Applications to take animals from the wild come from:

  • private keepers and breeders
  • wildlife demonstrators
  • wildlife exhibitors such as zoos and wildlife parks
  • wildlife management agencies
  • businesses involved in the production of biological products.

We will only consider applications from non-South Australian residents if they come from a recognised wildlife park or Zoo and Aquarium Association institution.

What other activities are regulated?

We regulate a wide range of activities involving animals in the wild including:

  • hunting duck and quail (during a declared season), as well as hunting unprotected native animals and introduced (feral) animals
  • rescuing and rehabilitating sick and injured native wildlife
  • commercial kangaroo harvesting as part of the South Australian Kangaroo Conservation and Management Program
  • taking protected animals from the wild for public display in zoos or wildlife parks, captive breeding and introducing new species to the captive wildlife trade
  • capturing and removing venomous snakes causing anxiety to the public
  • trapping possums found in building roofs and releasing them outside of the building within 50 metres
  • destroying native animals where they are causing a detrimental environmental, economic or social impact
  • scientific research of native animals in their natural environment.
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