Travelling with plants and animals (including products) as personal effects into or out of Australia

You may be able to import or export some wildlife specimens if they are personal items and are carried with you in your luggage. Some may still require a CITES export permit from the exporting country, but may be exempt from import permit requirements. Some may require both a CITES export and CITES import permit.

Importing CITES specimens into Australia

Personal Effects Exemptions

You will generally not need an import permit if you want to import up to four non–live CITES Appendix II specimens as personal effects, as long as they are:

  • in your personal baggage when entering Australia, and
  • for personal use and not intended for sale or any other commercial purpose, and
  • the quantity of the specimen does not exceed any other applicable quantitative limit as noted in the notation column of the list of CITES species, and
  • the CITES authority in the exporting country has already granted permission to export. Note: Export permission may include honouring an existing exemption such as personal and household effects , and
  • the item is not a live plant or animal.

This does not apply to specimens that are specifically listed as requiring an import permit, for which you will need an import permit and a valid export permit from the exporting country. For example, CITES Appendix II hunting trophies require an import permit.

You will only be allowed to import a non–live CITES Appendix I specimen into Australia if it is accompanied by a pre–CITES certificate from the country of export.

Household Effects Exemptions

You will generally not need an import permit if you want to import non–live CITES Appendix II specimens as part of a household move, as long as they are:

  • for personal use and not intended for sale or any other commercial purpose, and
  • the item is not a live plant or animal, and
  • the items are not specifically listed as a specimens always requiring a permit from Australia, and
  • the CITES authority in the exporting country has already granted permission to export. Note: Export permission may include honouring an existing exemption such as personal and household effects , and
  • the quantity of the specimen does not exceed any applicable quantitative limit as noted in the notation column of the list of CITES species, or
  • the export is from one of the countries listed below:
    • Belgium
    • Canada
    • Chile
    • France
    • Germany (not for native specimens from Germany)
    • Greece
    • Hong Kong
    • Italy
    • Kenya (only if accompanied by a CITES certificate issued by the Kenya CITES Management Authority)
    • Malaysia (not for native specimens from Malaysia)
    • Mauritius
    • Switzerland (only for items such as a worn belt or shoes, but not for new souvenirs, art objects, etc)
    • United Kingdom (not for native specimens from the United Kingdom)
    • United States of America
    • Vanuatu.

Exporting CITES specimens out of Australia

Personal and Household Effects Exemptions

You will generally need an export permit if you want to export non–live CITES–listed specimens that are personal or household effects.

If the item is a non–live CITES Appendix I specimen, it must be accompanied by a Australian Pre–CITES permit for export out of Australia.

CITES permit exemptions—CITES Appendix II listed specimens

The following CITES Appendix II listed specimens worn on a person or contained in accompanied baggage and for personal use do not require any CITES documentation to be imported into or exported from Australia (as long as they meet the following quantity limits):

  1. Caviar of sturgeon species (Acipenseriformes spp.) — up to a maximum of 125 grams per person where the container has been labelled using valid, non–reusable labels with codes as required by CITES (e.g. from country of origin: HUS/W/RU/2000/xxxx/yyyy, or if repackaged: PER/W/IR/2001/IT-wwww/zzzz);
  2. Rainsticks of Cactaceae spp. — up to three specimens per person;
  3. Crocodile products — up to four specimens per person;
  4. Queen conch (Strombus gigas) shells — up to three specimens per person;
  5. Seahorses (Hippocampus spp.) — up to four specimens per person;
  6. Giant clam (Tridacnidae spp.) shells — up to three specimens, each of which may be one intact shell or two matching halves, not exceeding 3 kg per person.

Exporting native plant and animal specimens

You may take specimens non–live of Australian native plants and animals when you leave Australia if they are carried as personal items in your personal baggage.

You do not need a permit for them as long as they are:

See also