Gilbert's potoroo, one of the world's most endangered mammals.

The Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016 provides for species, subspecies or populations of native animals (fauna) to be listed as Specially Protected, Threatened (Critically Endangered, Endangered or Vulnerable) or Extinct in Western Australia.

The Ministerial Guidelines provide further details on the criteria and procedures that apply.

Threatened and priority fauna list

Threatened fauna listings are reviewed annually. The Threatened Species Scientific Committee reviews recommended changes. The public can submit nominations to add to (or delete from) the Threatened Fauna List.

Changes to the Priority Fauna List do not require a nomination form. Suggested changes can be emailed to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Fauna may also be listed as nationally threatened fauna under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999, the Australian Government's central piece of environment legislation.

Authorisation to take and disturb threatened animals

The Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016 (BC Act) provides for species, subspecies or populations of native animals (fauna) to be listed as Specially Protected, Threatened (Critically Endangered, Endangered or Vulnerable) or Extinct in Western Australia.

Activities which may result in the taking or disturbance of all fauna requires lawful authority under the BC Act. A lawful authority is required if the activity meets the definition of take or disturb as per section 5 of the Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016:

take—in relation to fauna, is:

(i) to kill, injure, harvest or capture fauna by any means;

(ii) to cause or permit anything referred to in subparagraph (i) to be done.

disturb—in relation to fauna, is:

(i) to chase, drive, follow, harass, herd or hunt fauna by any means;

(ii) to apply an identifier to fauna by any means;

(iii) to engage in an activity that has the effect, whether directly or indirectly, of altering the natural behaviour of fauna to its detriment;

(iv) to cause or permit anything referred to in subparagraph (i), (ii) or(iii) to be done.

A Ministerial Authorisation under section 40 of the BC Act is required to take or disturb threatened species (critically endangered, endangered or vulnerable).

The Authorisation Holder must comply with the conditions to which the authorisation is subject as per section 150 of the BC Act.

How do I apply for authorisation to take or disturb threatened fauna?

The department's Species and Communities Program is responsible for administering section 40 Ministerial Authorisations to take or disturb threatened species. Application forms are available below to cover the types of activities which may result in taking or disturbing of fauna.

Applications for a section 40 authorisation that are associated with a wildlife licence type as defined in Part 4 of the Biodiversity Conservation Regulations 2018 (BC Regs) will be considered against the requirements outlined in regulation 76. All applications will be considered in the context of the object of the BC Act in section 3(1)(a) to conserve and protect biodiversity and biodiversity components in the State.

As provided for in section 41 of the BC Act, conditions may be imposed to mitigate or offset the impact that an activity carried out under the authorisation is likely to have on the total known population of the relevant species in the state and on relevant habitat.

There are no fees associated with a section 40 Ministerial Authorisation. 

AuthorisationDescription

Ministerial authorisation to Take or Disturb Threatened Fauna – Wildlife Activities

Wildlife related operations/projects that involve activities aligned to a wildlife licence type (as listed below) and involve threatened species, non-threatened species or both are applied for using a single form. Forms for these activity types are accessible via the Wildlife Licensing webpage.

Activities are related to a licence type listed under Part 4 of the Biodiversity Conservation Regulations 2018.

  • Fauna taking – commercial purposes (r.24)
  • Fauna taking - scientific or other purposes (r.25)
  • Translocation · Fauna taking - biological assessment (r.27)
  • Fauna taking – relocation (r.28)
  • Fauna disturbing - commercial interaction (r.30)
  • Fauna disturbing - other purposes (r.31) · Fauna disturbing - feeding (r.32)

 For more information, please contact Wildlife Licensing: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Ministerial authorisation to Take or Disturb Threatened Fauna in a Management Operation

For management operations/projects please complete the Authorisation to Take or Disturb Threatened Fauna in a Management Operation form.

Activities are associated with a management operation:

  • Activity requiring approval under Environmental Protection Act 1986 (Part IV and V); excluding activities that inform EIA assessments.
  • Clearing (e.g., mining, development, construction)
  • Infrastructure construction or maintenance (e.g., road, rail, power, water, fencing)
  • Water extraction
  • Weed control (e.g., herbicide spraying, slashing)
  • Fire activities not covered by exemption order

 For more information, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 How do I apply for authorisation to take threatened fauna for a translocation?

All translocations must be carried out in accordance with Corporate Guideline no. 36 Recovery of Threatened Species Through Translocation and Captive breeding or Propagation.

To apply for a section 40 Ministerial Authorisation involving translocation of threatened fauna, please complete a fauna taking (scientific or other purposes) licence application. An approved Translocation Proposal must accompany the section 40 Ministerial Authorisation. Please contact Species and Communities Program at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for further information.

Do I need an authorisation for fire mitigation?

On 15 October 2021, the Biodiversity Conservation (Exemptions) Amendment Order 2021 (Amendment Order) was published. The Amendment Order exempts landowners and occupiers who are undertaking specified bushfire mitigation activities on land that is not managed by DBCA from the requirement for an authorisation to take a threatened species under section 40 of the BC Act under certain conditions. A series of fire information notes have been developed to assist landowners and occupiers to manage fuel loads while minimising impacts to threatened species.

How does the Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016 interact with the Environmental Protection Act 1986?

Where a project that may take threatened fauna has been approved under the Environmental Protection Act 1986, a section 40 Ministerial Authorisation is required.

Ministerial Authorisation is only required to disturb threatened fauna when the activity has not been authorised under other relevant legislation (i.e. there is not lawful authority for the activity). Lawful authority includes activities that are lawful under the EP Act, including exemptions under that Act. Hence any activity that is lawful under the Environmental Protection Act 1986 does not require a section 40 authorisation to disturb threatened fauna.

See the department’s fact sheet for further information on how the BC Act interacts with the Environmental Protection Act 1986.

What if the species is listed as 'Threatened' nationally?

You may also need federal government approval for a species listed as a threatened under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999. Note, exemptions under the BC Act do not apply to the federal legislation.

More information

For further information, contact Species and Communities This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Data for threatened and priority fauna

Data for threatened and priority fauna can be requested from This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. More information on data searches is available in the Database Search request information sheet .

Animal sightings and report forms

Have you seen a threatened animal?

Report sightings of threatened and priority fauna, other specially protected animals, and migratory birds protected under international agreement by sending us an email or completing a report form. 

The report form may also be used to record unusual observations of common animals, such as where an animal is found outside of its usual range. 

If you are unsure if you have correctly identified an animal, take a photograph, not a specimen. 

Licences are required for the taking of native wildlife in Western Australia. 

Under the Biodiversity Conservation Act, specific authorisation, separate to a licence, is required to take or disturb threatened fauna. However, providing first aid or emergency care is permitted.

Submitting a fauna (animal) report form

The report form can be downloaded and then completed electronically or printed. 

To submit the report form, email it to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Fauna sighting records can be viewed through NatureMap

Recovery plans and interim recovery plans for Western Australian animals

General information regarding recovery plans and interim recovery plans for Western Australian threatened species and communities can be found on the Threatened Species and Communities page. Any draft plans that are open for public comment will also be found at Threatened Species and Communities.

Species namePlan titleYear
Abrolhos painted button-quail (Turnix varius scintillans) pdfAbrolhos painted button-quail (Turnix varius scintillans) Interim Recovery Plan502.1 KB 2018
Albatrosses
Giant petrels
National recovery plan for threatened albatrosses and giant petrels 2011-2016 2011
Antarctic tern [Indian Ocean] (Sterna vittata vittata)
Australian lesser noddy (Anous tenuirostris melanops)
Blue petrel (Halobaena caerulea)
Fairy prion [southern] (Pachyptila tutur subantarctica)
Herald petrel (Pterodroma heraldica)
Soft-plumaged petrel (Pterodroma mollis)
National recovery plan for ten species of seabirds 2005
Antina, Central rock rat (Zyzomys pedunculatus) pdfAntina interim recovery plan873.92 KB 1996-98
Australian sea-lion (Neophoca cinerea) Recovery plan for the Australian sea-lion 2013
Australasian Bittern (Botaurus poiciloptilus) pdfAustralasian Bittern (Botaurus poiciloptilus) Western Australian Recovery Plan2.09 MB 2018
Baudin’s cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus baudinii)
Forest red-tailed black cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus banksii naso)
Forest black cockatoo (Baudin’s cockatoo) and Forest Red-tailed black cockatoo recovery plan 2008
Black-footed rock wallaby (Petrogale lateralis)
Short-eared rock wallaby (Petrogale brachyotis)
Monjon (Petrogale burbidgei)
Nabarlek (Petrogale concinna)
Rothschild rock wallaby (Petrogale rothschildi)
Recovery plan for five species of rock wallabies: black-footed rock wallaby, short-eared rock wallaby, monjon, nabarlek and rothschild rock wallaby 2012
Blue whale (Balaenoptera musculus)
Fin whale (Balaenoptera physalus)
Sei whale (Balaenoptera borealis)
Blue, fin and sei whale recovery plan 2005-2010 2005
Butler’s dunnart (Sminthopsis butleri) National multi-species recovery plan for the Carpentarian antechinus, Butler’s dunnart and northern hopping-mouse 2004-2008 2004
Camaenid land snails of the East Kimberley (includes 24 species and 2 sub species) pdfCamaenid land snails of the East Kimberley interim recovery plan 648.33 KB 2005-10
Cape Range Remipede (Kumonga exleyi (formerly Lasionectes exleyi)) Cape Range remipede community (Bundera Sinkhole) and Cape Range remipede interim recovery plan 2000-03
Carnaby's cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus latirostris) Carnaby's cockatoo recovery plan 2012
Camerons Cave Millipede (Stygiochiropus peculiaris)
Camerons Cave Pseudoscorpion (Indohya damocles (formerly Hyella sp.))
Camerons Cave troglobitic community, Camerons Cave millipede and Camerons Cave pseudoscorpion interim recovery plan 2012-17
Chuditch (Dasyurus geoffroii) Chuditch recovery plan 2012
Crested shrike-tit [northern (sub)species] (Falcunculus (frontatus) whitei)
Masked owl [north Australian mainland subspecies] (Tyto novaehollandiae kimberli)
Partridge pigeon [eastern subspecies] (Geophaps smithii smithii)
National multi-species recovery plan for the partridge pigeon, crested shrike-tit and masked owl 2004
Dibbler (Parantechinus apicalis) pdfDibbler recovery plan376.26 KB 2008
Djoongari or Shark Bay mouse (Pseudomys fieldi) pdfDjoongari (Shark Bay Mouse) recovery plan 1992-2001 (3rd edition)321 KB 2000
Dunsborough burrowing crayfish (Engaewa reducta)
Margaret River burrowing crayfish (Engaewa pseudoreducta)
Walpole burrowing crayfish (Engaewa walpolea)
pdfDunsborough burrowing crayfish, Margaret River burrowing crayfish and Walpole burrowing crayfish recovery plan2.82 MB 2008
Flatback turtle (Natator depressus)
Green turtle (Chelonia mydas)
Hawksbill turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata)
Leatherback turtle (Dermochelys coriacea)
Loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta)
Olive Ridley turtle (Lepidochelys olivacea)
Recovery plan for marine turtles in Australia 2017
Gilbert’s potoroo (Potorous gilbertii) pdfGilbert’s Potoroo (Potorous gilbertii) recovery plan1.37 MB 2016
Golden bandicoot (Isoodon auratus)
Golden-backed tree-rat (Mesembriomys macrurus)
Recovery Plan for the golden bandicoot and golden-backed tree-rat 2004-2009 2003
Gouldian finch (Erythrura gouldiae) National recovery plan for the Gouldian finch 2005
Great desert skink (Liopholis kintorei (formerly Egernia kintorei)) Recovery plan for the great desert skink 2001-2011 2001
Great white shark (Carcharodon carcharias) Recovery plan for the white shark 2013
Greater bilby (Macrotis lagotis) National recovery plan for the greater bilby 2006
Grey nurse shark (Carcharias taurus) Draft recovery plan for the grey nurse shark 2013 2013
Lancelin Island skink (Ctenotus lancelini) pdfLancelin Island skink recovery plan317.19 KB 2000
Malleefowl (Leipoa ocellata) National recovery plan for malleefowl 2007
Minnivale trapdoor spider (Teyl species "C") pdfMinnivale trapdoor spider interim recovery plan179.13 KB 1998-2000
Night parrot (Pezoporus occidentalis) pdfNight parrot interim recovery plan for Western Australia313.67 KB  1996-98
Northern quoll (Dasyurus hallucatus) National recovery plan for the northern quoll 2010
Northern marsupial mole (Notoryctes caurinus)
Southern marsupial mole (Notoryctes typhlops)
Recovery plan for marsupial moles 2005-2010 2004
Numbat (Myrmecobius fasciatus)  Numbat (Myrmecobius fasciatus) recovery plan
2017
Plains rat, Palyoora (Pseudomys australis) National recovery plan for the plains mouse 2012
Red Goshawk (Erythrotriorchis radiatus) National recovery plan for the red goshawk 2012
Rufous Hare-wallaby, Mala (Bernier and Dorre Islands) (Lagorchestes hirsutus bernieri)
Rufous Hare-wallaby, Mala (central mainland) (Lagorchestes hirsutus spp. NTM U2430)
Rufous hare-wallaby national recovery plan 2012
Red knot (Calidris canutus)
Curlew Sandpiper (Calidris ferruginea)
Great Knot (Calidris tenuirostris)
Greater Sand Plover (Charadrius leschenaultii)
Lesser Sand Plover (Charadrius mongolus)
Bar-tailed Godwit (western Alaskan) (Limosa lapponica baueri)
Bar-tailed Godwit (northern Siberian) (Limosa lapponica menzbieri)
Eastern Curlew (Numenius madagascariensis)
pdfInterim Recovery Plan for the Threatened Migratory Shorebirds visiting Western Australia5.99 MB 2018
Southern right whale(Eubalaena australis) Conservation Management Plan for the Southern Right Whale 2013
Sub-Antarctic fur seal (Arctocephalus tropicalis )
Southern elephant seal (Mirounga leonine)
Sub-Antarctic fur seal and southern elephant seal recovery plan 2004
Sunset frog (Spicospina flammocaerulea) pdfSunset frog recovery plan138.66 KB 2002
Thick-billed grasswren (western subspecies) (Amytornis textilis textilis) pdfThick-billed grasswren (western subspecies) interim recovery plan 410.9 KB 2003-08
Quokka (Setonix brachyurus) Quokka recovery plan 2013
Western barred bandicoot (Perameles bougainville)
Burrowing bettong (Bettongia lesueur)
Banded hare-wallaby (Lagostrophus fasciatus)
Western barred bandicoot, burrowing bettong and banded hare-wallaby recovery plan 2012
Western ground parrot (Pezoporus wallicus flaviventris
Western bristlebird (Dasyornis longirostris)
Noisy scrub-bird (Atrichornis clamosus)
Western whipbird (western heath) (Psophodes nigrogularis nigrogularis)
Western whipbird (western mallee) (Psophodes nigrogularis oberon)
Rufous bristlebird (western) (Dasyornis broadbenti litoralis)
South Coast Threatened Birds recovery plan 2014
Western ringtail possum (Pseudocheirus occidentalis) Western ringtail possum recovery plan
2017
Western spiny-tailed skink (Egernia stokesii) Western spiny-tailed skink recovery plan 2012
Western swamp tortoise (Pseudemydura umbrina) Western swamp tortoise recovery plan 2010
Western trout minnow (Galaxias truttaceus hesperius) pdfWestern trout minnow recovery plan557.07 KB 2008
Whale shark (Rhincodon typus) Whale shark recovery plan 2005-2010 2005
White-bellied frog (Geocrinia alba)
Orange-bellied frog (Geocrinia vitellina)
pdfWhite-bellied and orange-bellied frogs recovery plan1.67 MB 2014
Woylie (Bettongia penicillata ogilbyi) National recovery plan for the woylie 2012

Protocols for monitoring threatened animals

The following manual provides guidance on the establishment of monitoring programs for animals. Refer to the department's Standard Operating Procedures for further information on fauna survey and monitoring techniques.