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Branding and earmarking livestock

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Brands application process update

Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown there are some changes to the brands application process.

  • All brand and earmark applications, must be emailed to brands@daf.qld.gov.au. For security reasons, credit card details must not be entered on application form.
  • Once the application form is received, licensing and transaction staff will phone applicants to process fee payments via a secured line.
  • Do not post applications as they will not be received by processing staff.
  • Only horse and cattle three-piece brand applications and pig brand applications, will be processed until after the lockdown. Clients should delay lodging applications for symbol brands or earmarks, until after the COVID-19 lockdown is lifted.

Branding is compulsory for cattle and pigs when they are offered for sale in Queensland. Exemptions apply for approved stud cattle sales and calves under 100kg liveweight. When an animal is branded with a legally registered brand and earmarked, this can be used to establish legal ownership.

Livestock owners are responsible for registering brands and earmarks, and obtaining the branding iron and earmarking pliers. Owners must ensure that branding irons are made to the exact shape shown on the certificate of registration, and that only approved paints or pastes are used (in the case of pigs, sheep and goats).

Brands and earmarks are registered to an entity, not a property. Earmarks are registered for use only within a particular district and registration is not automatically transferred with a change of property ownership.

Only authorised people can possess and use registered brands and earmarks. Check with Biosecurity Queensland to ensure the brands and earmarks are registered in the correct name.

This guide includes information about branding and earmarking cattle, horses, sheep, goats and pigs, as well as cross branding rules.

Note: If cattle are taken directly to slaughter from another state or territory, they may be exempt from branding requirements if they:

  • have been purchased over the scales at the feedlot in Queensland
  • are kept at a registered cattle feedlot in Queensland until they are slaughtered.

Interstate cattle sold live in Queensland must still be branded.