Hives m
Hives on station country.
Photo © Eric Steele

Beekeepers are required to make application to the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA) to obtain approval to access certain Crown land, place beehives and remove honey, bees-wax and pollen from that land. The approval is given in the form of an apiary permit or licence.

DBCA manage and issue apiary permits and licences in accordance with Part 8A – Apiary permits and licences of the Conservation and Land Management Regulations 2002.

Land that DBCA can issue apiary permits or licences for include:
National parks, conservation parks, nature reserves, state forest, timber reserves, pastoral leases, mining tenements and unallocated crown land.

DBCA do not currently issue permits/licences on crown land vested with local councils/shires or land vested with other government departments.

DBCA do not issue permits/licences on private land.

When applying for a site, apiarists must supply the following documents:

  1. application form with coordinates for proposed sites, photo of the site, information on if clearing is required and payment details;
  2. public liability insurance certificate with $10million coverage;
  3. the certificate of registration as a beekeeper from the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development; and
  4. a disease risk area permit if applying for sites within a disease risk area (this can be obtained at a later date).

Application/Approval Time

To ensure your application is processed in a timely manner please ensure all of the above information is submitted with each application. It is also a good idea to speak with the DBCA districts prior to submitting an application. The district staff can provide more information on the site, access and if clearing of vegetation is required.

Licence or Permit

What is the difference between an apiary permit and an apiary licence?

Licences and permits are granted in accordance with Part 8, Division 1 and 2 of the CALM Act and Regulations. Licences may be granted for up to 5 years and are issued for sites that are located on the following land:

  • National Park
  • Conservation Park
  • Nature Reserve

Permits are granted for a term of 7 years and are issued for apiary sites on the following types of land:

  • State Forest
  • Timber reserve
  • Unallocated Crown Land
  • Pastoral leases
  • Mining tenements

Fees

There is a fee for each application that a beekeeper sends in, you can select 5 sites per application fee. If you apply for 15 sites, the application fee will be $155 x 3 = $465. Beekeepers must visit each site in person prior to submitting an application to ensure there is suitable access.

Once you have received an apiary authority there is also an annual fee to keep the site. Beekeepers no longer using sites are encouraged to return the apiary authorities so that they no longer pay an annual fee and so that other beekeepers can use the sites.

When there are no sites available, beekeepers are able to borrow others’ sites. They just need approval from the site holder, complete the “Application to temporarily use an apiary authority not being used by the authority holder” and send it to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Clearing Vegetation

Once you have received an apiary authority from DBCA you may need to clear some vegetation to place your hives. Clearing of vegetation must be discussed with the district office and the beekeeper may obtain a clearing permit from the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation (DWER). The application for a clearing permit is available on DWER’s website.

Apiary Site Mapping System

If you would like to look for suitable apiary site locations, visit the apiary site mapping system.

Information on the mapping system is available in the document below “Beekeeper Mapping System”.

The mapping system is managed by the Department. Should there be any issues with accessing the site please contact the Tourism and Property Branch at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call (08) 9219 8240.

Apiary Site Use Notification

It is a condition of every apiary permit and licence that beekeepers notify the Department prior to placing beehives on a site. Please use the Apiary site use notification form to register your intent.

District contacts