Wildlife licences grant permission for work that affects protected animals and plants. A basic wildlife licence allows an activity that would otherwise be illegal.
GET A WILDLIFE LICENCE: You need a valid reason to apply for a wildlife licence.
UK planning and development law sets down the purposes for all protected species licences.
Carrying out activities prohibited under wildlife legislation means you will need a licence. That type of work includes activities which:
Applications should go to the relevant nature conservation body in your specific country. The information below explains how to apply. There is an online process through a Government Gateway.
You can also send a wildlife licence application by post using paper format. As a rule, there is no charge for this service by the relevant issuing body.
In most cases, they issue the wildlife permit within 15 to 30 days of receiving the application. They will also give an explanation if they decide to refuse the permit. Each particular application form will provide full guidance on carrying out the procedures.
There are three types of wildlife licence granted by the issuing bodies in the United Kingdom:
As a rule, applying for a one-off wildlife licence is quicker by post or by email. But, the method of application depends on which of the different types of wildlife licence you need.
If you apply by post you should send the completed application along with any documents to:
Bristol BS1 5AH
Telephone: 020 802 61089
Members of the public can register to apply online for a class or individual type of licence. But, follow these 3 steps if already have a registration set up:
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Releasing non-native wildlife or plants into the wild may require special authorisation. If the animal or plant is on the list of prohibited species you must apply to Natural England for a licence to:
Note: Further information on non-native species is available from the Non-native Species Secretariat.
To release non-native plants or wildlife in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland you should contact:
NIEA Wildlife Licence: The Northern Ireland Environment Agency issue wildlife licences in Northern Ireland.
Wildlife Licences for Protected Species in the United Kingdom