Apply for a permit to collect samples or undertake research on plants, soils, rocks, invertebrates, fresh water fish species or historic materials that are on public conservation land.

Delays in processing

We currently have a backlog of applications. We're working hard to prioritise older and urgent applications. If you have any concerns contact

You must have permission from DOC if you want to collect samples or undertake research on public conservation land on any of the following:

  • plants
  • soils
  • rocks
  • invertebrates
  • freshwater fish species
  • historic materials.

Find out what authorisation you will need and how to apply.

Pre-application meeting

Applying for a Wildlife Act authorisation for the first time can be complicated. To ensure your application goes smoothly we offer a free pre-application meeting. We’ll also help you contact the local iwi to assess whether your proposed activity will have any cultural effects.

Apply for authorisation

Identify the name and status of the public conservation land you wish to use by checking DOC maps.

Variation to authorisation

Standard applications

For standard applications your fee is likely to be $400 plus GST ($460 including GST) for commercial activities (there is no charge for non-commercial). We will invoice you once we have processed your application.

Your application should be processed within 15 working days of receipt. 

Complex applications

These applications are likely to have more significant environmental effects than standard applications.

A proposed activity is considered complex if it involves:

  • commercial use of the material (a concession will also be required)
  • taking of any sample (including DNA) for genetic modification purposes, eg the creation of a new organism
  • material being removed from New Zealand (except for purely taxonomic classification purposes)
  • the application or conduct of the activity will generate significant public interest
  • methods or species that need more complex consideration by DOC
  • covers a large number of locations.

To get your permit as quickly as possible, be specific about the area(s) and species you would like to research. A broader permit that covers many regions and/or species takes much longer to process because it requires considerable liaison between district offices, as well as consultation with multiple iwi.

If your application involves large areas, or the whole of New Zealand, you must also clearly express the conservation benefit or we will request that you narrow your application down.  

Your fee will be $800 plus GST ($920 including GST) for commercial applications (including registered companies). There is no charge for non-commercial applications. We will invoice you once we have processed your application. If the application is particularly complex then further costs may be charged above the estimated fee.

Your application may take up to six weeks to process.

Research and collection authorisations

We recommend you check the standard authorisation for your activity before you make an application so you know what to expect and what will be expected of you. If the authorisation is not listed here, contact our Hamilton office.

Contact us

For more information or assistance with your application, contact our Hamilton office.

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