National Livestock Identification System

The National Livestock Identification System (NLIS) ensures lifetime movements of cattle, bison, buffalo, sheep, pigs and goats can be identified and recorded within Australia. Queensland participates in the NLIS, which is supported by Queensland legislation.

Traceability, especially lifetime traceability, is important for biosecurity purposes, including the management of disease and chemical residues.

View our National Livestock Identification System video for more information.

Property identification code (PIC)

The NLIS is based on the property identification system. Animal movements are recorded against property identification codes (PICs) on the National NLIS database.

Anyone in Queensland who keeps the threshold number of livestock are registerable biosecurity entities, must be registered with Biosecurity Queensland and will be allocated a PIC.

NLIS requirements

There are specific NLIS requirements when moving different types of livestock in Queensland. All cattle, bison, buffalo, sheep, pigs and goats must be fitted with an approved NLIS device when moving between properties identified with a different PIC. All movements must be reported to the NLIS database within 48 hours of livestock being moved.

NLIS devices are permanent devices that must not be removed once fitted, and will remain for the lifetime of that animal. If a device is lost, the animal must be retagged with an approved NLIS device prior to moving off the property.

Ordering NLIS devices

Approved devices and tags are only available from licenced manufacturers.

To order an approved device or tag, registered biosecurity entities or authorised users must first obtain an 'Application for Permanent NLIS Device' signed by a biosecurity inspector. This application is available from Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) offices where biosecurity inspectors are located. You can also access an NLIS order form online via the Biosecurity Entity Registration portal. Contact our Customer Service Centre on 13 25 23 for assistance.

Natural disasters and stray stock

The NLIS can be used to assist the relocation of livestock displaced by a natural disaster, or livestock that have strayed.

Find out how the NLIS can help with moving cattle during floods and natural disasters and identifying stray cattle after a natural disaster.

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