Want to keep non-native animals?

A person must have a non-indigenous animal biosecurity registration to keep the following non-native animal species (listed in Schedule 4 of the Act), unless they are authorised under the Exhibited Animals Protection Act 1986 or Animal Research Act 1985:

  • Antilope cervicapra (blackbuck)
  • Camelus dromedaries (dromedary camel or Arabian camel), unless the animal is in any part of NSW other than the Western Division and is permanently identified in a manner approved by the Secretary
  • Lama guanicoe (guanaco)

It is an offence to keep or be in charge of these animals without a biosecurity registration. Registrations are only issued to persons, corporations or incorporated associations, and are not issued to partnerships or business names.

Higher risk species

The Act also provides for the private keeping of certain higher-risk non-native species under a biosecurity permit. Privately kept higher-risk non-native animals are considered to introduce unacceptable biosecurity risks. Therefore, the private keeping of higher-risk non-native species is being phased out. Biosecurity permits for species listed in Schedule 3, Part 3 of the Act will only be issued if the keeper held a valid licence under the Non-Indigenous Animals Act 1987 immediately before 1 July 2017.

Water buffalo, American bison and banteng ownership

It is no longer necessary to hold a NSW DPI authority to privately keep the following livestock species: water buffalo (Bubulis bubulis), American bison (Bison bison) and banteng (Bos javanicus).

The management of biosecurity risks associated with these species is provided for under the Biosecurity (National Livestock Identification System) Regulation 2017, Local Land Services Act 2013, and the general biosecurity duty provision within the Biosecurity Act 2015.

Please see the Local Land Services livestock information page for further information.

For more information, refer to NSW DPI policy, Management of Non-indigenous animals – prohibited and registerable dealings (PDF, 290.6 KB)

Biosecurity Registration conditions

Biosecurity registrations may be issued with a combination of general and specific conditions aimed at managing the biosecurity risks associated with the animal(s).

The general conditions which apply to biosecurity registrations are outlined in the Procedure for Biosecurity Registrations and should be reviewed before an application for a biosecurity registration is completed and submitted to the NSW DPI.

Specific conditions that may be included in a biosecurity registration include: minimum security standards for animal enclosures, addresses for properties such as veterinary facilities where an animal is anticipated to be moved to from time-to-time, prohibitions on breeding, and maximum numbers of animals able to be kept.


  • Biosecurity registration application: $720 for five years
  • Biosecurity registration renewal application: $420 for five years
  • Biosecurity registration variation application: $70 per hour
  • Biosecurity permit application: $720 for five years
  • Biosecurity permit application: $720 for five years. A reduced fee of $420 will be applied to existing licence holders under the Non-Indigenous Animals Act 1987 subject to DPI holding relevant information.

For more information about the fees charged under the Act, please see the Fees Fact Sheet.

Annual record returns

The completion and lodgement of record / return forms provide NSW DPI with key information about the animals that have been registered or permitted to be kept, including any changes that may have taken place such as births, deaths and the permanent identification details for each individual animal being kept. This allows the NSW DPI to better monitor and manage the ongoing biosecurity risks associated with the keeping of higher-risk non-native animals.

Record returns are due on 31 May each year.


Authorised officers appointed under the Act have a range of powers for investigating, monitoring and enforcing compliance with the legislation, and preventing, eliminating, minimising or managing biosecurity risks or suspected biosecurity risks associated with non-native animals. Offences apply if you do not meet these obligations.