Amendments to Queensland’s Biosecurity Act 2014 commenced on 26 April 2019. Under the new Queensland biosecurity laws, fines can be issued to those entering a property who don’t comply with the biosecurity management plan for that place. To support the enforcement of these new laws, Queensland farmers and livestock producers are encouraged to:
- Ensure they are registered as a biosecurity entity;
- Review their biosecurity management plan and signage to ensure the new laws can be enforced.
Should my property be registered as a biosecurity entity?
If you own or keep one or more of any of the following in Queensland, you must be registered:
- Cattle, sheep, goats, pigs, bison, buffalo, deer;
- Alpacas, llamas, or other animals from the Camelidae family;
- Horses, ponies, donkeys, mules, zebras, or other animals from the Equidae family;
- 100 or more birds that are raised for human consumption (e.g. poultry); or are raised for the production of eggs for human consumption (e.g. poultry); or have been released into free flight since they started being kept in captivity (e.g. pigeons); or
- One or more beehives.
Find out more about who must be registered as a biosecurity entity.
How can I check if I am already registered as a biosecurity entity?
Check your registration status if you:
- Have registered as biosecurity entity since July 2016
- Held a property identification code (PIC) on 1 July 2016, when the Biosecurity Act 2014 came into effect. Anyone who held a PIC on that date was automatically registered as a biosecurity entity.
Check your registration status online, or you can phone our Customer Service Centre on 13 25 23 to find out if you are registered.
Do I need to have a biosecurity management plan?
Developing a biosecurity management plan is entirely optional but it is a great way to ensure you are meeting your general biosecurity obligation to minimise biosecurity risks. Also, the new laws will only apply to your property if you have a biosecurity management plan in place for your property. Biosecurity management plans are key to the enforcement of the new biosecurity laws. Under the new laws anyone that enters your property must comply with your biosecurity management plan when they enter or leave and while they are on your property. Fines for non-compliance with a biosecurity management plan cannot be issued if there is no plan in place.
If I already have a biosecurity management plan, do I need another one?
No. But we recommend you review your current plan to ensure it aligns with the requirements for a plan under the new biosecurity laws. Some livestock owners have an existing on-farm biosecurity plan in place as part of industry accreditation systems. Others have an existing biosecurity management plan to meet their existing general biosecurity obligation.
- A checklist of information you can use to review your existing plan to ensure you are protected bythe new biosecurity laws is available on the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) website.
If I don’t have a biosecurity management plan, how can I get one?
A biosecurity management plan template available for download on the Australian Animal Health website. Biosecurity Queensland recommends this template.
Is it ok if my biosecurity management plan is just called a biosecurity plan?
Ideally, the words biosecurity management plan should exist somewhere in your plan, if not as the heading. This will simplify enforcement of the new biosecurity laws. Your current biosecurity plan template may need to be updated so the wording biosecurity management plan is in the heading or somewhere in the document.
Do I need to have the plan approved by Biosecurity Queensland?
No. The Government does not approve these plans. A valid plan will state reasonable measures to prevent, control or stop the spread of biosecurity matter into, at or from a place.
Do I have to have biosecurity management signs in place on my property?
Yes. To ensure the new biosecurity laws apply there must be conspicuous signage advising that a biosecurity management plan applies to your property.
Where do I have to place biosecurity signs on my property?
It is recommended that a sign is placed at all entrances to any management area identified in the biosecurity management plan. If your whole property comes under your biosecurity management plan, place signs at all entrances. This is needed to alert visitors that a biosecurity management plan is in place for the property.
What does the biosecurity sign have to say?
It is essential that the sign advises that a biosecurity management plan applies to the place and it is an offence for a person entering, present at, or leaving the management area to fail to comply with the measures stated in the plan without a reasonable excuse (e.g. if an emergency service has to enter your property to fix a problem).
Where can I get the new biosecurity sign from?
You can download an approved sign from the DAF website. Use it to produce a sticker to go over a current sign, or print a new sign. You may be able to produce a sticker that updates part of your existing sign, if needed. If you prefer, you may make your own sign. Suggested dimensions of the sign are 900 mm x 600 mm.
What if I already have a farm biosecurity sign, do I need a new one?
If you already have biosecurity signage to manage visitors, you can amend signage to reflect the new requirements.
Need more information? Phone 13 25 23