Native animal categories
Native animals are categorised into four wildlife keeping schedules: Unprotected, Exempt, Basic and Specialist.
Unprotected native animals
Unprotected animals are not protected in the wild and you do not need a permit to take them into captivity, or to keep or sell them. See list of Unprotected animals.
However, dingoes may not be kept south of the dog fence. See the Biosecurity SA website for information about dingoes and the dog fence.
You do not need a permit to destroy Unprotected animals if they are causing or likely to cause damage to crops, stock or other property, and you are the landowner, a member of their household, or an employee or agent of the landowner.
However, you need a permit to hunt Unprotected animals. There are additional restrictions on galahs and little corellas. Permits are required to hunt galahs or little corellas as chicks or young flyers for the live pet trade, and to hunt them by trapping.
Protected native animals
The final three categories of native animals are protected in the wild.
For protected animals, you need a permit to:
- destroy animals causing or likely to cause damage on private land
- take from the wild to bring them into captivity
- rescue or rehabilitate
- import or export into or from the state
- keep or sell for scientific reasons.
Exempt animals are very common in captivity and/or their natural habitat. They are usually easy to keep in captivity. See list of Exempt animals.
You do not need a permit to keep, sell or receive as a gift Exempt animals.
Basic animals are common in captivity and/or their natural habitat. They are usually easy to keep in captivity. See list of Basic animals.
Specialist animals are any native animal that is not listed as Unprotected, Exempt or Basic. We don’t keep a list of them as there are thousands of species. If in doubt, you can check with the Fauna Permit Unit.
Specialist animals may be difficult to keep, threatened in the wild, in high demand from illegal trading, or special for another reason. They include venomous snakes, lace monitors, koalas, wombats and black cockatoos.
You always need a permit to keep or receive as a gift one or more Specialist animals. People applying for a Specialist permit must provide evidence that they have the skills and facilities needed to safely and properly care for these animals. Specialist permit holders may also keep or sell Basic animals under this permit.
List of all Unprotected, Exempt and Basic species
To see the category of your animal of interest, see the list of all Unprotected, Exempt and Basic species. Note that Specialist animals are not listed. A Specialist animal is simply any native animal not listed in the list of species.
Changes to categories - 1 July 2019
From 1 July 2019, some species of animals are in a different category. Check this summary of changes to keeping schedules to see if your animal of interest has been moved.