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Topics > Science > Science & research

Wildlife Ethics Committee

Anyone using animals for teaching or research must be licenced to do so by the Minister and have approval from a South Australian Animal Ethics Committee (AEC).

DEW, Zoos SA and the South Australian Museum have formed a combined animal ethics committee, the Wildlife Ethics Committee (WEC). This committee has the relevant expertise to ensure that wildlife research complies with the Australian code for the care and use of animals for scientific purposes 8th edition (2013).

Individuals and institutions proposing to undertake research on wildlife, and not otherwise having access to a constituted South Australian animal ethics committee, will be directed by the Minister to use the WEC as a condition of their licence.

The WEC assesses whether or not the use of the animals is justified, that the welfare of those animals is protected, and that the principles of the 3Rs - replacement, reduction and refinement are incorporated into any research proposal.

The WEC meets approximately every eight weeks. You must submit applications to the executive officer by the submission deadlines listed in the table below, to allow for circulation and committee reading time.

For standard vertebrate monitoring and baseline surveys refer to the fauna survey application and consult the guidelines for lodging a wildlife ethics application for statewide fauna surveys.

For all other wildlife research, use the wildlife studies application form and consult the guidelines for submitting an application.

Common reporting forms

Often throughout the course of an approved project, there will be times where reporting to the WEC or requesting a minor change is required. The appropriate forms can be found below:

Submit your application to the Wildlife Ethics Executive Officer at

Wildlife Ethics Committee Meetings 2023

Submission DatesMeeting Date
Monday 16th January 2023Thursday 9th February 2023
Monday 6th March 2023Thursday 30th March 2023
Monday 24th April 2023Thursday 25th May 2023
Monday 19th June 2023Thursday 13th July 2023
Monday 7th August 2023Thursday 31st August 2023
Monday 18th September 2023Thursday 12th October 2023
Monday 13th November 2023Thursday 7th December 2023


More information