Catch and Release Licences: How to Remove Possums Legally

Catch and Release Licences are required by law if you intend to trap a possum. In this read, we'll unravel everything about getting licensed for catch and release, from understanding why possums are protected species right down to how you can apply for your own licence. 

You’ll get all the information needed not just to keep possums at bay but also to do so in line with wildlife conservation rules. 

Table Of Contents:

Possums are Protected: What Does that Mean for a Homeowner?

Catch and release licences vary throughout the state and territory government bodies in Australia. 

If a brushtail possum or a ringtail possum choose your property as their home, you can apply for a Catch and Release Licence as a Landowner. You can also engage with a professional Possum Removalist with a permit to catch and release. 

To ensure the ethical treatment of wildlife during the removal process, professional service providers need to be licensed by the governing body in your state. This guarantees compliance with safe practices and local laws, including relocation distance requirements. 

Before proceeding with any work on your property, verify that your chosen provider possesses valid licenses. 

With possums being a protected species, a pesky possum in your garden is not a valid reason to be approved for a catch and release licence. The possum must be inside your building, causing structural and or electrical damage which is a potential fire risk.

Catch and Release Licences: What are They?

Catch and release licences let you capture and set free native animals, like possums, on your property. 

It's not just about trapping them, though; it includes guidelines to make sure they're treated humanely.

This permit doesn't give you unlimited power but acts as an agreement between yourself and the local authorities. You agree to follow rules that respect our wildlife's well-being while sorting out your animal issue.

Catch and Release Licences: Who Can Apply for One?

In Australia, landholders can apply for a catch and release licence. This allows them to manage native animals, like possums, on their property. 

However, you will need clear evidence of animal issues before you can get this permit.

Catch and Release Licences: How to Apply?

Catch and release licences can be applied for from your local National Parks and Wildlife Area office.

Provide particulars of the creature, the area for laying traps, the person in charge of trapping and the method to return it to its native habitat when applying for a catch and release licence.

Failing to comply with these regulations can lead to severe repercussions. Hence, it is essential to abide by the regulations and take the right steps.

Catch and Release Licences: When Should You Apply For One?

If you have evidence of possum in roof issues, it is time to take action, and you can obtain a catch-and-release licence as a landowner. You do not require this licence for Possums in the garden 

Applying for a catch-and-release licence is the first step in addressing these issues responsibly.

This licence lets you capture native animals like possums, it is considered that you will be causing them harm, so National Parks take the application very seriously. 

The quicker you apply, the sooner you can start dealing with these unwelcome guests.

To obtain this permit, contact your local National Parks and Wildlife Area office—they'll guide you through the process smoothly.

Catch and release licences and possum removal combined with possum proofing go hand in hand as there is no benefit in just trapping a possum and releasing it within the legal distance without resolving the core issue being where is the possum coming in and out.

Catch and Release Licences: What Information is Required When Applying?

Firstly, be clear about the type of animal being caught. Is it a possum? What kind?

Next is the location of capture. It's vital to know where the possums are causing problems. This could be your home or business premises. 

The method of capture also matters. Possum traps should be humane, keeping our furry friends safe during their temporary captivity.

You must state who will do the catching as well - maybe that’s you. Finally, outline how they’ll regain freedom in their natural habitat post-capture.

Catch and Release Licences: What Are The Requirements?

To trap a possum in Australia, a Possum Catch & Release Licence is required by law. The various state government bodies throughout Australia issue these licences. Click on the state you live in for more information about the law regarding what you are legally allowed to do in regard to possums: NSW, VIC, SA, QLD, WA, TASACT and the NT.

If you or the removal company you hire are found to have moved a possum beyond this limit, you could be fined up to $50,000. This law applies regardless of your situation or reason for relocating the possum.  

What Happens After You Receive Your Catch And Release Licence?

After you've got your licence, you're obliged to follow all outlined regulations. 

This includes humane trapping methods and proper documentation of captures/releases. making sure you release the possum within the allowed distance of your state.

Catch and Release Licences Frequently Asked Questions

Is killing possums illegal in Australia?

Yes, they are protected, and it is illegal to kill or harm Possums.

Is it illegal to trap possums in Australia?

It is illegal to trap a possum without an appropriate licence. 

Can you catch and relocate possums?

Yes, but only if you have a catch-and-release license and abide by local legislative requirements. 

Is a possum a native Australian animal?

Yes, a possum is an Australian Native animal protected by law.

What happens if you don't follow the legal guidelines? 

You could face hefty fines or imprisonment. You may also be liable for any infringements if the Pest control company or Possum removal company you engage with is not appropriately licenced and are caught acting outside of the law regarding local regulations surrounding the relocation of the possum.


Catch and release licences can be legally issues subject to your application being approved by the relevant state or territory authority but understanding the significance of possum protection is paramount for responsible homeowners. 

With a clear grasp of the application process and requirements, you can take the necessary steps to address possum-related concerns on your property. Remember, compliance with regulations ensures the humane treatment of these native animals. 

Armed with the right knowledge and a valid licence, you can navigate possum management in a way that respects both wildlife conservation and your personal well-being.

It's crucial to remember that when you capture a possum in a trap, you can only relocate it within a range of 25-150 meters, depending on your state's regulations. In most cases, this means the possum is likely to return. 

For a lasting solution to address possum issues in your house or building roof, it's advisable to hire a professional possum removal company to implement a permanent possum-proofing solution.

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