The following Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA) Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) are documents that provide best practice guidance for wildlife survey and monitoring activities. They are valuable tools that can be used to ensure surveys and monitoring programs are undertaken consistently, to a high standard, and importantly, address the welfare and wellbeing of animals. They help to ensure that data collected will be adequate, consistent and comparable.

SOPs are living documents. They require continual updating and regular review by the Animal Ethics Committee (AEC) as new techniques arise and/or old procedures are improved. The AEC is required to maintain existing SOPs and endorse all new standards, updates or additions as per the provisions outlined in the Australian Code for the care and use of animals for scientific purposes.

Why have Standard Operating Procedures?

Advantages of SOPs are that they:

  1. act as a tool for communicating the department’s expectations in terms of animal welfare when applying wildlife monitoring or survey techniques
  2. promote quality though consistent collection of the data, even if there are changes in the personnel undertaking the survey or monitoring
  3. protect the health and safety of personnel by enabling jobs to be carried out in the safest way possible, and ensure that all of the safety, health, environmental and operational information is available to perform procedures with minimal impact
  4. facilitate training and proficiency in procedures, for both new personnel and for those that need re-training (e.g. after extended absence from a position)
  5. serve as a historical record for use when modifications are made to that procedure and when the SOP is revised.



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